What They Notice in Video: A Study of Prospective Secondary Mathematics Teachers Learning to Teach

Oct. 01, 2016

Source: Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education, volume 19 issue 5, 477–498, (2016)

(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

This study aimed to examine what prospective teachers (PSTs) noticed while watching video of their own co-teaching, particularly in a microteaching setting that consisted of peers.

The study took place in a secondary mathematics methods course for PSTs at a large public university in the Midwest.
The participants were secondary mathematics PSTs in their fourth year of a five-year teacher preparation program.
The author analyzed observation tools that recorded what the participants noticed and prioritized when watching a video of their own co-teaching episode from microteaching laboratory . The written observations that PSTs prioritized captured the moments they felt were most important that they attended to or should have attended to while re-watching their microteaching lesson on video. Finally, the author also interviewed six students after course grades had been posted.


The findings reveal that PSTs PSTs demonstrated the ability to look beyond themselves in the video and focus on students and student learning. The majority of PSTs' observations also included some aspect of the mathematical content they were attempting to help students understand in the video.
PSTs also demonstrated the ability to dissect specific moments of their teaching. They also consider some observations in regard to previous teaching experiences and theories.
Furthermore, the participants were also making connections beyond their one video lesson to other aspects of their teaching practice more than half of the time. Thus, PSTs in this study were able to successfully make and prioritize important moments in their teaching, but were not implementing these observations in the most practical ways yet for improving their teaching practices.

Application for teacher education

The author argues that PSTs held a positive attitude about video use, particularly because they believed it would help them become better teachers.
The author also argues that the observation tool could be used as a formative assessment by instructors to monitor what observations students are prioritizing when viewing teaching episodes. Additionally, the readings and connected activities provided instructors and PSTs with common experiences and language to articulate the things they were able to notice in video confidently.

The author concludes that it is beneficial to both PSTs and the students they teach in their first years in the classroom to continue helping these teachers develop noticing lenses that are dedicated to students and the content they are learning.

Updated: Oct. 29, 2017