Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Reflections from the ICOTS Conference: Two Worlds

Ane's Reflections:

After finishing my Master’s degree at the University of Minnesota, I went back to Brazil and since then I have been between two “worlds”: the world of U.S., with all I learned about statistics education, and the world of Brazil, where statistics education is still growing. It has been a challenge to unite both worlds; however, at ICOTS these two worlds got together very smoothly. I had the chance to meet some professors from all parts of Brazil who were interested in statistics education. Through their work I could see some of what is being done is Brazil. I had the chance to see Claudia Borim present about developing school mathematics teachers’ reasoning about variation. I also saw other presentations about critical statistics education from Celso Campos and students’ experiences with an online exercise from Andre Samartini.
Assessment development is an area of great interest of mine, so I was excited to see all the work that has been done in developing new assessments in the US. I very much enjoyed the sessions about the LOCUS assessment presented by Tim Jacobbe and Douglas Whitaker (University of Florida). I also had a great time hearing from my colleagues at the University of Minnesota: Robert delMas presented on the CAOS instrument and Laura Ziegler presented on the BLIS assessment.
However, ICOTS and statistics education goes beyond the US and Brazil. I had a chance to meet some renowned researchers such as Carmen Batanero from Spain. In addition, I was very interested in a presentation from Caterina Primi (Italy) about using Item Response Theory to construct a scale to measure basic probabilistic reasoning skills.
All the fun I had at ICOTS and everything I learned would not have been possible without the funding I got. So thank you Joan Garfield and the IASE for the financial help. :)

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