## Abstract

This study reports on the perceptions and understanding of beginning

teachers regarding mastery approaches to teaching mathematics to 11–16-

year-olds. It draws on qualitative data from six semi-structured interviews

using vignettes designed to interrogate teachers’ understanding of the

features of mastery learning within their practice. The data were transcribed

and analysed thematically, drawing on the literature in the field. Whilst

capturing the full complexity of beginning teachers’ perceptions and

understanding is beyond the scope of this study, the data provides insight

into these teachers’ experiences at a time when mastery learning discourse

is prominent in England. The study found that beginning teachers had

different interpretations of the principles of mastery learning. It also found

tensions between beginning teachers’ beliefs, practice, professional

knowledge and sense of agency in their developing classroom roles. Some

beginning teachers found it challenging to talk about pedagogy and had

continuing misconceptions about teaching and mastery approaches.

teachers regarding mastery approaches to teaching mathematics to 11–16-

year-olds. It draws on qualitative data from six semi-structured interviews

using vignettes designed to interrogate teachers’ understanding of the

features of mastery learning within their practice. The data were transcribed

and analysed thematically, drawing on the literature in the field. Whilst

capturing the full complexity of beginning teachers’ perceptions and

understanding is beyond the scope of this study, the data provides insight

into these teachers’ experiences at a time when mastery learning discourse

is prominent in England. The study found that beginning teachers had

different interpretations of the principles of mastery learning. It also found

tensions between beginning teachers’ beliefs, practice, professional

knowledge and sense of agency in their developing classroom roles. Some

beginning teachers found it challenging to talk about pedagogy and had

continuing misconceptions about teaching and mastery approaches.

Original language | English |
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Title of host publication | Proceedings of the British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics |

Volume | 41 |

Edition | 3 |

Publication status | Published - Nov 2022 |

### Publication series

Name | Proceedings of the British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics |
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Publisher | British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics |

## Keywords

- secondary mathematics; mastery; beginning teachers, initial teacher education