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We report on semi-structured clinical interviews to describe U.S. pre-service secondary mathematics teachers’ graphing meanings. Our primary goal is to draw on Piagetian notions of figurative and operative thought to identify marked differences in the students’ meanings. Namely, we illustrate students’ meanings dominated by fragments of sensorimotor experience and compare those with students’ meanings dominated by the coordination of mental actions in the form of covarying quantities. Our findings suggest students’ meanings that foreground operative aspects of thought are more generative with respect to graphing. Our findings also indicate that students can encounter perturbations due to potential incompatibilities between figurative and operative aspects of thought.



Published Citation

Moore, K. C., Stevens, I. E., Paoletti, T., Hobson, N. L., & Liang, B. (2019). Pre-service teachers’ figurative and operative graphing actions. The Journal of Mathematical Behavior, 56, 100692.

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