Paul Andrews

Paul Andrews


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Works at Department of Mathematics and Science Education
Telephone 08-120 766 14
Visiting address Svante Arrheniusväg 20 A, E-huset, Arrheniuslab
Room P 424
Postal address Institutionen för matematikämnets och naturvetenskapsämnenas didaktik 106 91 Stockholm

About me

Paul Andrews is a Professor of Mathematics Education. He started his career as a teacher of secondary mathematics in Telford, England. After 13 years teaching in three different schools in the town, he became a teacher educator at the Manchester Metropolitan University, where he undertook a mixed methods PhD on the factors that influence secondary teachers’ use of computers in their teaching of mathematics. In 1999 he moved to the University of Cambridge, where he obtained an EU grant of €300,000 to investigate, with colleagues in different countries, how mathematics is taught to children in the age range 10-14 in England, Finland, Flanders, Hungary and Spain. He moved to Stockholm in 2013 as a full professor. In 2015, he was awarded a Swedish Research Council grant of more than SEK 9 million to investigate the development of foundational number sense in year one children in England and Sweden. This project also involves MND’s Judy Sayers, one full-time PhD student and one full-time postdoctoral researcher. For the year 2011-2012 he was the 100th President of the Mathematical Association, an honour over which he is especially proud.


In addition to supervising a number of doctoral and masters students, Paul’s teaching typically focuses on doctoral courses. These include a course in basic quantitative analysis, courses in academic writing, a course in comparative research in mathematics and science education and, finally, a course on the development and analysis of educational surveys. He teaches on several masters courses and gives occasional lectures and mathematics workshops to undergraduate teacher education students. He loves teaching mathematical problem solving.


Paul has a wide range of research interests. He is particularly interested in exploring ways in which mathematics can be taught more effectively to learners of all ages, and  current projects include foci on problem solving, linear equations and foundational number sense. He continues to be interested in how mathematics teaching varies cross-culturally and the influence of participants’ beliefs on classroom activity and learner achievement. In this respect, with colleagues in different countries, he is investigating upper secondary students’ beliefs about the nature and relevance of school mathematics. For a number of years he has been concerned about and seeks evidence to support a challenge to the hegemony of the OECD’s PISA project, which, he argues, has a disproportional and largely unwarranted impact on the cultural uniqueness of a country’s educational ambitions.


A selection from Stockholm University publication database
  • 2016. Paul Andrews. Mathematical Cultures, 9-23

    In this chapter, I show how culture underpins all aspects of school mathematics, whether it be the curriculum specified by the system, the development of the textbooks that teachers may or may not be compelled to use, the ways teachers teach, the classroom interactions privileged by the system or the beliefs, attitudes and aspirations of teachers, students and parents. To do this, however, I will describe the nature of culture and its educational manifestation.

  • 2015. Paul Andrews, Judy Sayers. Early Childhood Education Journal 43 (4), 257-267

    It is known that an appropriately developedfoundational number sense (FONS), or the ability tooperate flexibly with number and quantity, is a powerfulpredictor of young children’s later mathematical achievement.However, until now not only has FONS been definitionallyelusive but instruments for identifyingopportunities for children to acquire its various componentshave been missing from the classroom observationtools available. In this paper, drawing on a constant comparisonanalysis of appropriate literature, we outline thedevelopment of an eight dimensional FONS framework.We then show, by applying this framework to three culturallydiverse European grade one lessons, one English,one Hungarian and one Swedish, that it is both straightforwardlyoperationalised and amenable to cross culturalanalyses of classroom practice. Some implications arediscussed.

  • 2016. Paul Andrews. International Journal of Social Research Methodology 20 (5), 455-467

    This paper discusses the ‘telling case’ (Mitchell, 1984) and the manner and extent of its use in social research. The ‘telling case’, proposed by Mitchell as a counter to prevailing expectations of typicality, is an ethnographic case study, derived from analytic induction and focused on the exposure of new theoretical insights. By means of an evaluation of the available literature this paper summarises Mitchell’s construal of the ‘telling case’ before examining how it has been exploited by others. The evidence suggests that while authors acknowledge the source of the ‘telling case’ few offer any substantial acknowledgement of Mitchell’s conceptualisation, indicating that most ‘telling case’ research has employed Mitchell’s name somewhat disingenuously and contributed to the growth of a methodological myth. Moreover, despite its international spread, its origins seem located in the work of a small number of internationally recognised scholars and the mobility of their former graduate students.

Show all publications by Paul Andrews at Stockholm University

Last updated: November 6, 2019

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