Vol. 22 No. 2 (2013)

The Association between Teachers' Beliefs, Enacted Practices, and Student Learning in Mathematics

Published 2015-05-01


Mathematics educators continue to explore ways to improve student learning. Of particular interest are the relationships between teachers’ instructional practices, their beliefs towards mathematics teaching, and student learning outcomes. While some studies have found empirical links between teachers’ enactment of specific instructional practices and gains in student learning, there is no conclusive connection between beliefs, instructional practices, and gains in student learning outcomes. This study examines a few critical relationships between: teachers’ beliefs and instructional practices, teachers’ beliefs and student learning outcomes, and teachers’ instructional practices and student learning outcomes. Data from 35 teachers and 494 elementary school students indicated significant relationships between teacher beliefs and practices but not between teacher beliefs or instructional practice when related to student achievement in mathematics measured by curriculum-based tests. Implications for the design of professional development and for further research related to mathematics teachers’ beliefs, their instructional practice and their student learning outcomes are also shared.