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Curriculum, Teaching  & Learning
Alexandre Cavalcante

Alexandre Cavalcante
Assistant Professor

phone: 416-978-0114

Department: Curriculum, Teaching and Learning

Research Overview

My research program is centered around numeracy education and how it can respond to the demands of a society in transition. Numeracy refers to the ways in which Mathematics is produced, used and perceived in everyday life contexts by different sociocultural groups. This concept is particularly important with the rapid changes different societies around the world are going through: intensified technological advancements, changes in social relations, globalization of production systems, immigration and demographic shifts. These phenomena impose new demands - new competencies - to navigate a world embedded with cultural diversity and social inequalities. My research aims to understand how numeracy can support the development of these competencies, therefore I am interested in numeracy education from elementary school all the way to adult education.

Within this research program, I propose an examination of numeracy practices in two distinct strands: formal educational contexts (in school) and informal contexts of practice (out of school).

In formal education contexts, I am interested in the integration of mathematics and real-life situations and how it impacts teachers and students. I am particularly concerned with the place of different financial numeracy concepts in the curriculum and how financial numeracy can position Mathematics at the center of STEM education.

In informal contexts, my interest is in the numeracy practices of different social groups. This includes investigating role of numeracy in developing entrepreneurship skills as well as the numeracy practices of culturally diverse groups in (such as immigrants, workers, linguistic minorities, indigenous peoples, etc.). These are two important issues for the Canadian society as it changes its economic structure and demographic composition. Consequently, it faces new challenges that have significant implications for Education.

Curriculum Vitae

Academic History

Ph.D. Educational Studies - Mathematics and Science - McGill University
M.A. Social and Human Sciences - UFABC
B.Eng. Management Engineering - UFABC / Korea University - 고려대학교
B.Ed. Secondary Mathematics - UFABC
B.Sc. Science and Technology - UFABC

Teaching Overview

CTL7022 - Curriculum and Teaching in Mathematics (I/S)
CTL1218 - Culture and Cognition in Science, Mathematics and Technology Education
CTL1217 - Integrating Science, Mathematics and Technology Curricula
CTL7002 - Curriculum and Teaching in Mathematics (J/I)

Representative Publications

Journal Articles

  • Cavalcante, A., Savard, A. (submitted). Understanding our world in a time of crisis: Mathematics education pedagogy toward financial numeracy. Journal of Education for Teaching.
  • Polotskaia, E., Fellus, O., Cavalcante, A., Savard, A. (submitted). Student Problem Solving in the Transition from Numerical to Relational Thinking. Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education.
  • Gonsalves, A., Cavalcante, A., Sprowl, E., Iaconno, H.  (accepted). “Anybody can do science, if they’re brave enough”: Understanding the role of science capital in science majors’ identity trajectories into and through post-secondary science. Journal of Research Science in Teaching.
  • Savard, A., Cavalcante, A., Turineck, L., Javahepour, A. (2020). Epistemological considerations towards the concept of money: Money as a measurement. For the Learning of Mathematics.
  • Caprioara, D., Savard, A., Cavalcante, A. (2020). The representations of financial education among elementary teachers in Romania: between cognition and citizenship. Bulletin of The Transilvania University of Brasov, 13(62), 47-56.
  • Cavalcante, A., Polotskaia, E., Savard, A., Fellus, O. (2019). Teacher noticing of student thinking: An analysis of a teacher’s interpretation of mathematics problem solving. Bulletin of The Transilvania University of Brasov, 12(61), 9-18.
  • Facó, J., Cavalcante, A. S., Jorge, R., Andrade, A., & Petarnella, L. (2016). Reflections about teaching science, technology and innovation through competencies and skills. Revista De Casos E Consultoria, 7(3), e731. (published in Portuguese)

Book Chapters

  • Cavalcante, A., Gonsalves, A. (accepted). Undergraduate science majors’ identity work in the context of a science outreach program: Understanding the role of science capital. In: O. Levrini, G. Tasquier, T. Amin, L. Branchetti, and M. Levin. ESERA book series. The Netherlands: Springer.
  • Caprioara, D.; Savard, A.; Cavalcante, A. (2020). Empowering Future Citizens in Making Financial Decisions: A Study of Elementary School Mathematics Textbooks from Romania. In Daniel Flaut, Sarka Hoskova-Mayerova, Cristina Ispas, Fabrizio Maturo, Cristina Flaut. (Eds.). Decision Making in Social Sciences between traditions and innovations. Springer.
  • Cavalcante, A.; Message, E.; Faco, J.; Mandel, P. (2016). Entrepreneurship is a mandatory subject. In J. Facó & P. Mandel (Eds.) There is innovation here! Santo Andre: EdUFABC. (published in Portuguese)
  • Cavalcante, A.; Faco, J. (2016). The relationship between innovation and education. In J. Facó & P. Mandel (Eds.) There is innovation here! Santo Andre: EdUFABC. (published in Portuguese)

Upcoming Book

  • Savard, A., Cavalcante, A. (accepted). Teaching Mathematics in Financial contexts: Research and Practice. Springer series: Mathematics Education in the Digital Era. Springer.