Educational Research on Mathematics—A Short Survey of Its Development in German Speaking Countries

  • Gellert U
  • Hefendehl-Hebeker L
  • Jahnke H
  • et al.
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In German speaking countries, educational thinking and theorizing on mathematics teaching and learning originated with the establishment of compulsory education for all children and the creation of a school system. Though first efforts go back to the 18th century it does make sense to start this survey with the beginning of the 19th century, with the implication that educational research on mathematics has a history of about two hundred years in German speaking countries. During the 19th century a more and more sophisticated system of publication (journals and books) on mathematics education emerged, the education of mathematics teachers had become more professional and teacher training had developed into one of the main obligations of university teaching. However, didactics of mathematics as an academic discipline is a comparably new achievement. Its establishment began approximately fifty years ago, predominately by creating professorships and opportunities of graduation at universities. After a phase of broad discussion on the identity of the discipline (e.g., in a special issue of ZDM edited by Steiner, 1974), the community of didactics of mathematics steadily expanded, diversified and developed fruitful connections to other neighboring disciplines. This overview intends to outline this development with respect to intuitions, key ideas, research strategies and the connection between research and practice. Selected topics are presented in the following chapters in more detail.




Gellert, U., Hefendehl-Hebeker, L., Jahnke, H. N., & Leuders, T. (2019). Educational Research on Mathematics—A Short Survey of Its Development in German Speaking Countries (pp. 1–23).

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