Adults, Mathematics and Work
From Research into Practice
John J. Keogh, Theresa Maguire and John O’Donoghue
Adults use mathematics extensively in work even though they may deny it or dismiss their numerate behaviour as common sense. Their capacity for mathematics is invisible to them and confirms their ‘non-maths person’ self-perception, which has negative consequences for their life choices.
In Adults, Mathematics and Work, the authors tackle and explain a number of paradoxes related to the curious relationship between adults and mathematics. It operationalises the benefits of workplace doctoral research by providing a set of the tools to review this mistaken self-perception in order to make workers’ abilities available for development. It also provides a systematic way of uncovering and recognising informal and non-formal learning to support employability and re-employability in an increasingly fluid work-landscape.
John J. Keogh, PhD (2013), after a 30 year career in Shipping, now lectures in Mathematics and Statistics. His research interest is mathematics in work and he published Work Based Learning in the Further Education & Training Sector (Keogh, 2016).
Theresa Maguire, PhD (2003), University of Limerick, has a lifelong passion for adult mathematics education. She has worked with the National Awards Council and at the academic/employer interface. She is currently Director of the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.
John O’Donoghue, PhD (1978), University of Loughborough, UK, is Emeritus Associate Professor of Mathematics Education, University of Limerick, Ireland. He has served as chair of Adults Learning Mathematics -- A Research Forum, and contributed to various publications in adult mathematics/numeracy including journal articles, book chapters, and conference proceedings.