An exploration of computer-mediated skill acquisition in concept mapping by Panamanian in-service elementary public school teachers


Norma Miller
Universitat Oberta de Catalunya

Norma obtained her B.S. in Physical Sciences at Mills College and her M.S. in mathematics at Northwestern University. In 1992 she moved to her present home, Panama, where for the first 10 years she taught mathematics part-time at the Panama Branch of FSU, while raising her two children, Dani and Hannah.

Since 2001 she has been enrolled in a Ph.D. program in Information and Knowledge Society at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Open University of Catalunya), Spain. A year later she joined the faculty of the department of Science and Technology at the Technological University of Panama, as assistant professor in mathematics, where she continues to teach.

Concerned about the quality of Panamanian education, in 2005 she became involved with Panama’s Conéctate Project, initially as a facilitator and shortly thereafter as researcher. Her current research examines the process by which the teachers being trained in the Conéctate workshops acquire skill in concept mapping. This work, conducted under the guidance of her thesis advisor Alberto Cañas, constitutes the main body of her doctoral dissertation. Today’s talk presents a summary of her results and conclusions.