Presentation Details

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Eleventh International Literacy and Education Research Network Conference on Learning

The Making of Intelligence: Poststructural Perspectives of Learning

Dr Anne M. Reynolds, Dr M. Jayne Fleener, Grayson H. Whetley.

Building on a poststructural perspective of self, this presentation will explore a systems approach to the making of intelligence as it may apply to the teaching and learning of mathematics. Drawing from the theoretical perspective of systems theory, intelligence can more adequately be viewed as stemming from “the interactive structures between associations and variables” (Richardson, 2000, p.129), the in-between spaces of knowing and doing. While theories of intelligence developed in the late 19th through 20th centuries viewed intelligence as some combination of inheritance of particular genes (nature) and particular environmental factors (nurture), systems perspectives of intelligence are consistent with the autopoietic features of the emerging self. Our study will explore what this may be like as we examine two mathematics problem-centered learning classrooms. Through participation within a discourse community, coordinated activity, and multiple perspectives, the making of intelligence co-emerges with the making of self. Mathematics literacy has been seen as a set of skills and procedures to be mastered and conformity in thinking and acting was the norm. The classroom settings we will explore foster the learning of mathematics as one of making sense, relying on and developing learners’ various unique perspectives. These teachers have redefined mathematics curriculum as the activity of constructing patterns and relationships, an emergence of seminal mathematical ideas in an interconnected way. When examined from the perspective of recent developments in brain research, these teachers can be seen as supporting the making of intelligence as a key process in the emergence of the dynamic self. Supporting the growth of mathematical intelligence, from this perspective, has significant potential for deterritorializing academic disciplines like mathematics and understanding complex ways of knowing.


Dr Anne M. Reynolds  (United States)
Associate Professor
Instructional Leadership and Academic Curriculum
University of Oklahoma

Interested in the teaching and learning of mathematics.

Dr M. Jayne Fleener  (United States)
Associate Dean
College of Education
University of Oklahoma

M. Jayne Fleener is Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies at the University of Oklahoma College of Education and Professor of Mathematics Education in the Department of Instructional Leadership and Academic Curriculum. Her teaching and research have been in the areas of philosophy, computer science, mathematics, mathematics education, and curriculum theory. She has over forty national and international publications including her recent book Curriculum Dynamics: Recreating Heart.

Grayson H. Whetley  (United States)

  • Intelligence
  • Poststructural perspective
  • Teaching and learning mathematics
  • Emerging self

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)