Journal for Research in Mathematics Education

An official journal of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), JRME is the premier research journal in mathematics education and is devoted to the interests of teachers and researchers at all levels--preschool through college.

In our editorial last January, echoed a question often raised by reviewers of manuscripts: What is this manuscript's contribution to our research field? In that first elaboration on how manuscripts may contribute to the field of research in mathematics education, we discussed the contributions of basic research. In this editorial, motivated by the illustrations provided by the articles included in this issue, we do a similar exercise with applied research.

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This study examined the prevalence of teacher tracking in a population of 1,822 mathematics teachers in 184 high schools in a single state. Results showed that 70% of teachers were tracked by course level, course track, or both. Three fourths of high schools tracked at least 58% of their mathematics teachers. We also found significant differences in teaching assignments across quintiles of years of experience at a teacher’s current school. First-quintile teachers were the most likely to be assigned low-track or entry-level courses. In contrast, fifth-quintile teachers were the most likely to be assigned high-track or upper-level courses. These findings indicate that the tracking of mathematics teachers is a prevalent and persistent inequitable structure in most high schools.

Changes in U.S. textbooks indicate that U.S. first-grade students in the Common Core era were exposed to a wider variety of word problem types than students in previous generations were. We compared the performance of U.S. first graders in the Common Core era with that of previous generations in solving 11 types of additive word problems to investigate a decades-long debate—whether certain types of word problems are inherently more difficult than others or whether relative difficulty is influenced by exposure. We found that overall patterns of relative difficulty persist; however, U.S. first graders in the Common Core era outperformed their historical counterparts when solving the types of problems that rarely appeared in textbooks used in the 1980s.

This article shows that enabling teachers to integrate comparing solution strategies into their teaching fosters student flexibility in algebra. We designed two professional development (PD) programs that either focused exclusively on comparing solution strategies, or additionally introduced the accountable talk approach to guiding productive classroom discussions. The effects of both PD programs were investigated in an experimental field study (N = 39 teachers, 739 students). In both experimental groups, student posttest gains in strategy flexibility and procedural knowledge were greater than in the control group. The accountable talk group also increased conceptual knowledge. Significant effects in strategy flexibility were still observed 2.5 months later. We discuss recommendations for PD programs to foster flexibility in algebra using comparing.

A follow-up of a cluster-randomized trial evaluated the long-term impacts of a scale-up model composed of 10 research-based guidelines grounded in learning trajectories. Two treatment groups received the intervention during the prekindergarten year, and one of these groups received follow-through support in kindergarten and first grade. Business-as-usual curricula were used in all other cases, including all years for the control group. Early effects on mathematics achievement decreased through fourth grade but reemerged at fifth grade. These results support both a latent trait hypothesis, whereby stable characteristics of students explain differences in achievement, and a latent foundation hypothesis, whereby early mathematical knowledge and skills provide a foundation for competence in mathematics in later years, especially those that involve challenging mathematics.

The Journal for Research in Mathematics Education is published online five times a year—January, March, May, July, and November—at 1906 Association Dr., Reston, VA 20191-1502. Each volume’s index is in the November issue. JRME is indexed in Contents Pages in Education, Current Index to Journals in Education, Education Index, Psychological Abstracts, Social Sciences Citation Index, and MathEduc.

An official journal of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), JRME is the premier research journal in mathematics education and is devoted to the interests of teachers and researchers at all levels--preschool through college. JRME presents a variety of viewpoints. The views expressed or implied in JRME are not the official position of the Council unless otherwise noted.

JRME is a forum for disciplined inquiry into the teaching and learning of mathematics. The editors encourage submissions including:

  • Research reports, addressing important research questions and issues in mathematics education,
  • Brief reports of research,
  • Research commentaries on issues pertaining to mathematics education research.


More information about each type of submission is available here. If you have questions about the types of manuscripts JRME publishes, please contact

Editorial Board

The JRME Editorial Board consists of the Editorial Team and Editorial Panel.  The Editorial team, led by JRME Editor Patricio Herbst, leads the review, decision and editorial/publication process for manuscripts.  The Editorial Panel reviews manuscripts, sets policy for the journal, and continually seeks feedback from readers. The following are members of the current JRME Editorial Board.

Editorial Staff  

Patricio Herbst

University of Michigan; Editor

Sandra Crespo     

Michigan State University; Associate Editor
Percival Matthews University of Wisconsin - Madison; Associate Editor
Erin Lichtenstein

University of Michigan; Assistant Editor

Michael Ion

University of Michigan; Editorial Assistant

Daniel Chazan University of Maryland; Research Commentary Editor

Editorial Panel 

Karl Kosko

Kent State University; Chair

Jennifer Suh

George Mason University; Board of Directors Liaison

Lillie Albert

Boston College

Tutita Casa

University of Connecticut

Teddy Chao               

Ohio State University                

Toya Frank

George Mason University

Luis Levya

Vanderbilt University

Ami Mamolo

Ontario Tech University

Kate Melhuish

Texas State University

Chandra Orrill

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

Eva Thanheiser

Portland State University

Annie Wilhelm

Southern Methodist University

William Zahner

San Diego State University

David E. Barnes

NCTM, Reston, Virginia; Staff Liaison


International Advisory Board  

Sigrid Blömeke


Faaiz Gierdien

South Africa

Ghislaine Gueudet


Haiyue Jin


Oh Nam Kwon

South Korea

Thomas Lowrie


Luis Pino-Fan



Headquarters Journal Staff 

David E. Barnes

Associate Executive Director

Ken Krehbiel

Executive Director

Scott Rodgerson

Director of Publications and Creative Services 

Sandy Jones

Production Manager



The editors of the Journal for Research in Mathematics Education (JRME) encourage the submission of a variety of manuscripts. Manuscripts must be submitted through the JRME Online Submission and Review System

Research Reports

JRME publishes a wide variety of research reports that move the field of mathematics education forward. These include, but are not limited to, various genres and designs of empirical research; philosophical, methodological, and historical studies in mathematics education; and literature reviews, syntheses, and theoretical analyses of research in mathematics education. Papers that review well for JRME generally include these Characteristics of a High-Quality Manuscript. The editors strongly encourage all authors to consider these characteristics when preparing a submission to JRME. 

The maximum length for Research Reports is 13,000 words including abstract, references, tables, and figures.

Brief Reports

Brief reports of research are appropriate when a fuller report is available elsewhere or when a more comprehensive follow-up study is planned.

  • A brief report of a first study on some topic might stress the rationale, hypotheses, and plans for further work.
  • A brief report of a replication or extension of a previously reported study might contrast the results of the two studies, referring to the earlier study for methodological details.
  • A brief report of a monograph or other lengthy nonjournal publication might summarize the key findings and implications or might highlight an unusual observation or methodological approach.
  • A brief report might provide an executive summary of a large study.

The maximum length for Brief Reports is 5,000 words including abstract, references, tables, and figures. If source materials are needed to evaluate a brief report manuscript, a copy should be included.

Correspondence regarding manuscripts for Research Reports or Brief Reports should be sent to

Patricio Herbst, JRME Editor,

Research Commentaries

JRME publishes brief, peer-reviewed commentaries on issues pertaining to mathematics education research. Research Commentaries differ from Research Reports in that their focus is not to present new findings or empirical results, but rather to comment on issues of interest to the broader research community.  Commentaries are intended to engage the community and increase the breadth of topics published in JRME

Topics for this section may include, but are not restricted to the following:

  • Discussion of connections between research and Principles to Actions
  • Commentaries on research methods
  • Discussions of connections between research, policy, and practice
  • Analyses of trends in policies for funding research
  • Examinations of evaluation studies
  • Critical essays on research publications
  • Commentaries or interpretations of previously published research in JRME that bring insights from an equity lens
  • Exchanges among scholars holding contrasting views about research-related issues

The maximum length for Research Commentaries is 5,000 words including abstract, references, tables, and figures.

Correspondence regarding Research Commentary manuscripts should be sent to 

Daniel Chazan, JRME Research Commentary Editor,

Tools for Authors

The forms below provide information to authors and help ensure that NCTM complies with all copyright laws: 

Student Work Release

Photographer Copyright Release

Video Permission

The Journal for Research in Mathematics Education is available to individuals as part of an NCTM membership or may be accessible through an institutional subscription.

The Journal for Research in Mathematics Education (JRME), an official journal of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), is the premier research journal in math education and devoted to the interests of teachers and researchers at all levels--preschool through college.

JRME is published five times a year—January, March, May, July, and November—and presents a variety of viewpoints. Learn more about JRME.

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