Undergraduate Honors Thesis Projects

Date of Award

Spring 4-1-2019

Document Type

Honors Paper

Degree Name



Mathematical Sciences


Dr. Jeffrey P. Smith

First Committee Member

David J. Stucki

Second Committee Member

Dr. Karen F. Steigman


history of mathematics, secondary education, high school mathematics, mathematics education

Subject Categories

Algebra | Other Mathematics | Science and Mathematics Education | Secondary Education


This research will study the effect teaching the history of mathematics in a high school classroom has on student understanding. To accomplish this, lessons both including and excluding historical background on different topics were taught in an Honors Algebra 2 class in the high school setting. This research aims to engage student learning and investigation of topics that normally do not draw a lot of student focus and spark a new or revived interest in mathematics for students by broadening lessons to include material of which students would not otherwise be exposed. The lessons themselves aim to engage other current and future educators to incorporate more historical and background information in their own lessons. The lessons allow students to think and learn as those who created and discovered the content being taught. In doing this, students will gain a deeper understanding of the material and a better ability to complete problems and the like in the lessons including historical topics.