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Mathematical thinking in the classroom on derivative: fostering university students’ mathematical thinking

Kartal, Özde Funda
The purpose of this study was to investigate the opportunities provided mathematics students to engage in mathematical thinking during the instruction of derivative concepts and categorize the students’ mathematical thinking on derivative concept through test results and interview. Multiple methods of collecting data were used. A calculus class at a public university in Ankara was observed in spring semester of 2014-2015 academic year. At the end of the semester, the Thinking-about-Derivative test was applied and interviews were conducted with 5 participants. The data revealed that considering the instructions of derivative, the students were provided a platform for their formal, axiomatic, algebraic, iconic, algorithmic and enactive thinking. In addition, Thinking-about-Derivative Test results and interviews indicated that the students activated their formal, axiomatic, algebraic, iconic, algorithmic and enactive thinking while they answered the test items, as well. The findings also showed that the different mathematical thinking aspects worked collaboratively.