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An Investigation of the Effect of Teaching Productive Disposition Using a Positive Education Framework on Mathematics Teachers’ Wellbeing and Secondary School Students’ Wellbeing and Academic Achievement in Tasmania


Confirmation of Candidature presentation by Aimee Woodward

Start Date

26th Oct 2017 2:30pm

End Date

26th Oct 2017 3:15pm


Education Video Conference Rooms:

  • Launceston: NH.A221c.Video
  • Hobart: SB.Hytten325.Video
  • Cradle Coast: CC.A119 Video

The Australian Curriculum: Mathematics (AC:M) (ACARA, 2016) defines four proficiency strands. The work from which these strands are drawn Includes a fifth proficiency (productive disposition) that relates to students' propensity to persevere and to perceive mathematics as worthwhile.  This study examines the importance of productive disposition, as reflective of the Importance of affect in mathematics learning.

Upon close inspection, the AC:M  and the overarching General Capabilities, especially Personal Capability, do seem to offer insufficient direction in regards to developing productive disposition in students.  However, this study postulates that for productive disposition to be fostered in students, teachers themselves must have productive disposition towards mathematics and the teaching of mathematics. Teachers must believe that they, and all of their students, can learn, and improve in their ability to learn mathematics; that mathematics is intelligible, and that they as teachers can improve their teaching and understanding through effort.  Thus, this study hypothesizes that addressing the productive disposition of mathematics teachers and students may be a means of improving mathematics achievement in Australia.

This study initially investigates the event to which teachers are aware of, and see to develop productive disposition in their classrooms.  Then, using the framework of positive education, in particular the assessment and development of character strengths, the study then aims to develop and evaluate a professional learning program that addresses the productive disposition and wellbeing of secondary mathematics teachers.  Some aspects of the effect of this program on students’ wellbeing and academic achievement will also be examined.