NOMAD 9(1), 2004. A Nordic Graduate School in Mathematics Education starts in 2004


Nordisk Forskeruddannelsesakademi, NorFa, has decided to support a Nordic graduate school in mathematics education for the period 2004 – 2008. Five million NOK has been granted to Agder University College to carry out the work. The application was signed by Barbro Grevholm in the name of the MERGA-group (Mathematics Education Research Group at Agder) with support from the board of the graduate school. There were 57 applications to NorFA and Agder was chosen as one among ten to get support for a second application round. The second application in June 2003 was supported by letters of intent from 37 departments in the Nordic and Baltic countries with more than 70 students. From the ten applications five were selected to get the support.

In the application we gave this short description of the research school’s targets and aims.

Research in mathematics education embraces conditions of importance to teaching and learning in mathematics, children’s development of mathematical concepts, the role of language, the teacher’s influence, social aspects, and attitudes to mathematics. The research field is mainly related to the subjects pedagogy and mathematics. In most countries mathematics is regarded as one of the subjects, which is necessary to master in order to be able to fully participate in a democratic society. There are many important societal reasons to strengthen research in mathematics education.

The aim of a Nordic Graduate School in mathematics education is to
– support and develop the education of researchers in mathematics education in the Nordic and Baltic countries,
– create constructive cooperation in order to raise the scientific quality of research in mathematics education,
– give all doctoral students in mathematics education access to the activities of the Graduate School
– create cooperation among a greater group of doctoral students and supervisors in order to share experiences and opportunities to improve the education of researchers.

The utmost aim is to create a network of cooperating partners, who can continue to collaborate after the five years of the Graduate School.

The graduate school will be open to all doctoral students in mathematics education in the Nordic and Baltic countries and their supervisors. The main activities are described like this in the application.

Activities in the Nordic Graduate School in Mathematics Education
– Common courses created with the added competence from all researchers in the Nordic countries and international partners
– Summer schools building on earlier good experience from similar arrangements
– Seminar-series in specific research areas as a complement to local series and workshops on subjects or issues of main importance
– Competence development for supervisors and exchange of
– Partnership and collaboration with distinguished international scholars
– Creating a database for ongoing work, theses and greater
development work in mathematics education
– Mobility stipends and special financial support for doctoral students

The first courses will take place in Spring 2004. Doctoral students are encouraged to seek necessary support from the graduate school e. g. for travel and lodging.

The board consists of Barbro Grevholm (chair), Trygve Breiteig, Norway, Gudmundur Birgisson, Iceland, Ole Björkqvist, Finland, Mogens Niss, Denmark and Rudolf Strässer, Sweden. International centers of excellence are working partners. For more information contact

Barbro Grevholm
Department of mathematical subjects
Agder University College
Serviceboks 422
N-4604 Norway

Barbro Grevholm