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Using mathematics to solve or make sense of real-world problem situations and examining how mathematics has been used in context is of growing interest and importance in research within Australasia. Simultaneously curricula writers are increasingly recognising the importance of educating mathematically literate citizens of the world who can solve real-world problems. This chapter considers the different perspectives on teaching through mathematical modelling and applications and briefly reviews exemplary literature focusing on the teaching of mathematical modelling and applications. Not surprisingly, clear differences emerge in classroom practices engaged in applications, using known mathematics, versus modelling—where the mathematics that might be useful needs to be determined by the student. Theoretical developments in the field are reviewed. Recently, the research field has expanded from being mainly school focused to include pre-service and in-service teacher education. Methodological tools used in modelling and applications research that are being adopted or adapted in the region are then reviewed. Finally, the current positive state of Australasian modelling and applications research and its progress since last being reviewed in 2008 is discussed with an eye to possible future developments.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Book Chapter

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