Developing the role of modelling in the teaching and learning of probability

Kazak S., Pratt D.

RESEARCH IN MATHEMATICS EDUCATION, vol.23, no.2, pp.113-133, 2021 (ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 23 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/14794802.2020.1802328
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, ASSIA, EBSCO Education Source, Education Abstracts, Educational research abstracts (ERA), ERIC (Education Resources Information Center)
  • Page Numbers: pp.113-133
  • Keywords: Teaching and learning distribution, integrated modelling approach, theoretical and data-centric perspectives
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: No


We examine the challenges of teaching probability through the use of modelling. We argue how an integrated modelling approach might facilitate a coordinated understanding of distribution by marrying theoretical and data-oriented perspectives and present probability as more connected to the social lives of modern-day students. Research is, however, also showing that learning modelling is non-trivial. For example, students can easily be confused between real-world data and model-generated data. Furthermore, students tend to create models that reflect the structure of the problem context rather than its mathematical structure. The argument we present is that teaching probability through an integrated modelling approach could offer important educational benefits, but this would be an immense challenge to the skills and knowledge of teachers and would demand increased levels of resources for teacher development. The implication is that research needs to identify suitable forms of teacher development and designs for tasks and curricula.