Faculty ProfileEMPHASIS AREA: MTH. Elementary Education; Gender and equity issues in mathematics education; In-service and preservice teacher learning; Mathematics education
Rebecca Ambrose Professor, Director of Teacher Education
After teaching middle school math for ten years, I decided to pursue a PhD to get a fresh perspective on the issues I observed every day in my classroom and thought that maybe I could help develop remedies that would help other teachers, as well.
Rebecca Ambrose researches how children solve mathematics problems and works with teachers to apply what she has learned about the informal strategies children employ to differentiate and improve instruction in math. She credits her approach to a method called Cognitively Guided Instruction, founded by Thomas Carpenter and Elizabeth Fenneman in the 1980s at the University of Wisconsin.
Elementary Education; Gender and equity issues in mathematics education; In-service and preservice teacher learning; Mathematics education
Ph.D. – University of Wisconsin, Madison – 1998
Awards and Honors
Markham Mathematics Collaborative, Improving Teacher Quality Grant from California Post-Secondary Education Commission, 1/04-6/06.
Scholarship and Creativity Award. SDSU College of Education. 2000-2001.
Scholarship and Creativity Award. SDSU College of Education. 1999-2000.
Current Activities and Service
Chair, School of Education Admissions and Fellowships Committee.
Strategic Alliance of Robla/UCD/SCOE, $273,127
Funded By: California Post-Seconday Education Commission
2007 – 2011
Provide and research professional development with a focus on children’s mathematical thinking to teachers of kindergarten – second grade.
Ambrose, Rebecca and Alexander, Cathleen. (August 2010). “Digesting Student-Authored Story Problems.” Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School. National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, 16, (1), 27-33.
UC Davis School of Education Associate Professor Rebecca Ambrose will collaborate with three of her doctoral students to make presentations at the Annual Meeting of the North American Chapter of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education (PME) held November 14-17, 2013.
For Rebecca Ambrose, the key to teaching math to children lies in an understanding of how they solve problems before anyone has taught them.
“Kids use informal strategies and can figure things out in very interesting and sophisticated ways. What we observe about how they approach mathematical problem solving can inform the basis for teachers’ instruction,” said Ambrose.