Semiotics in Mathematics Education

by Norma Presmeg, Luis Radford, Wolff-Michael Roth, Gert Kadunz

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Book Description

This volume discusses semiotics in mathematics education as an activity with a formal sign system, in which each sign represents something else. Theories presented by Saussure, Peirce, Vygotsky and other writers on semiotics are summarized in their relevance to the teaching and learning of mathematics. The significance of signs for mathematics education lies in their ubiquitous use in every branch of mathematics. Such use involves seeing the general in the particular, a process that is not always clear to learners. Therefore, in several traditional frameworks, semiotics has the potential to serve as a powerful conceptual lens in investigating diverse topics in mathematics education research. Topics that are implicated include (but are not limited to): the birth of signs; embodiment, gestures and artifacts; segmentation and communicative fields; cultural mediation; social semiotics; linguistic theories; chains of signification; semiotic bundles; relationships among various sign systems; intersubjectivity; diagrammatic and inferential reasoning; and semiotics as the focus of innovative learning and teaching materials.

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