Compendium for Early Career Researchers in Mathematics Education by Gabriele Kaiser, and Norma Presmeg
Preface to Compendium for Early Career Researchers in Mathematics Education
Early career researchers represent the future of the field, insofar as they will shape the further development of research within the field.
Hence the importance, for the future of high-quality research in the field of mathematics education, of supporting and encouraging new scholars as they enter this community of researchers.
It has now become common for large international and national conferences, and not only those in mathematics education, to offer specific activities for early career researchers in order to introduce them to the important research methods within the field, to provide them with surveys and overviews on topics significant to the field and to introduce them to academic writing and publishing.
Overall, these activities aim to induct early career researchers into the community, help them become au fait with its research standards and provide insight on the state-of-the-art results achieved so far by those who have already worked in this community for a long time and who are identified as experts in the field.
At the 13th International Congress on Mathematical Education (ICME-13), which took place from 24 to 31 July 2016, an Early Career Researcher Day was therefore organized to take place directly before the congress on 24 July 2016, which attracted 450 participants.
This Compendium and its chapters are based on workshops that were presented as part of this activity, with a few additional chapters on important themes in mathematics education.
Although the Early Career Researcher Day, and ICME-13 itself, followed the structure of summer schools in general and special workshops from various networks (e.g. the European Researchers on Mathematics Education, or activities of the German community), the question arises whether early career researchers need specific offerings or, in general, why the programme was structured in such a way, and why we structured the Compendium as it is.
We have seen in the last two decades a strong development towards higher quality standards of research in mathematics education. Rigorous standards of quality need to be met in carrying out research in fulfilment of the requirements for a Ph.D., or at post-doc level.
One of these requirements is to have a clear conceptual framework including reference to well-known theories from mathematics education, either as home-grown theories, or invoking those borrowed from other disciplines.