Teaching math modeling through 3D-printing: Examining the influence of an integrative professional development

Reuben S. Asempapa, Tyler S. Love

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Mathematical modeling is a critical component of the current K–12 mathematics, science, and technology and engineering (T&E) educational standards in the United States. However, mathematical modeling is often overlooked or underemphasized in integrative STEM lessons. This could be attributed to teachers’ limited content and pedagogical knowledge related to integrating mathematical modeling in integrative STEM lessons. Continual advances in technologies like 3D design and printing software and additive manufacturing processes now allow students to see abstract mathematical modeling concepts in contextualized and practical forms. Consequently, we examined changes in mathematics, science, and T&E teachers’ mathematical modeling knowledge and views resulting from a 1-day integrative professional development (PD) experience. The PD specifically focused on applying mathematical modeling concepts to design and 3D print solutions to integrative STEM lessons. A sample of 50 participating teachers reported increases in certain mathematical modeling knowledge areas, and a large percentage indicated they were more likely to implement mathematical modeling in their classrooms. The results from this study indicated that integrative PD could enhance teachers’ content knowledge, practices, and views about integrative STEM lessons including mathematical modeling and 3D printing. The findings from this study have implications for teachers, school districts, researchers, and professional development providers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-95
Number of pages11
JournalSchool Science and Mathematics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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