Where Do Teachers Come From?

Dr. Kate Johnson

Dr. Kate Johnson

The College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences would like to welcome Kate Johnson as a new assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics Education.

Johnson graduated from Miami University in Ohio with a BS degree in mathematics in 2002. She then received her MS degree in education with a focus on the education of students who are deaf and hard of hearing from the University of Pittsburgh in 2004.

After receiving her MS degree, Johnson taught high school math at the Virginia School for the Deaf and the Blind until 2008. Johnson then went to Michigan State University where she received her PhD in Curriculum, Instruction, and Teacher Education in 2013.

“I am interested in mathematics education because I have opportunities to explore mathematical ideas, which I love, as well as think about what it means to know and do mathematics,” Johnson said. “I am also interested in studying how people become teachers.”

Her research focuses on how teachers’ past social experiences and background influence their teaching.

“I am interested in how who people are informs who they are as mathematics teachers. What I mean by this is people have races, religions, genders, classes, experiences, and so on that inform their teaching practices,” Johnson said. “I am interested in illuminating both what these identities are and how they influence the work in mathematics classrooms.”

Johnson chose to come to BYU to teach because she likes the crossover between teaching and learning math with gospel principles.

“I am excited that my students have experiences with the gospel to draw on,” Johnson said. “I am also grateful for the opportunity to work with people who have shared understandings of the teachings of the restored gospel so that we can have productive discussions about my work on the intersection of identities with teaching and research.”

In her free time, Johnson likes to experiment with knitting, watercolors, and photography.


cover photo credits: Julie Paradise1 via photopin cc; peddhapati via photopin cc

By Caroline Smith Posted on