Gloriana González's research focuses on how teachers manage students' prior knowledge. She is interested in examining teachers' decision-making when handling students' prior knowledge and the rationality underlying those decisions. With the support of a CAREER grant by the National Science Foundation, she is leading a project that aims at creating a professional development model combining animations and video clubs within a Lesson Study cycle to promote teacher learning.

Key Professional Appointments

Assistant ProfessorDepartment of Curriculum and Instruction, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2009 - present


Ph.D., Mathematics Education, University of Michigan, 2009

M.S., Mathematics Education, Cornell University, 1995

B.A., Secondary Mathematics Education, University of Puerto Rico, 1993

Awards, Honors, Associations

Distinguished College Scholar Award, 2015-2016College of EducationUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2015 - 2015

Emerging Scholar AwardNorth American Systemic Functional Linguistics Association, 2015 - 2015

Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award, College of Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignCollege of EducationUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,, 2012 - 2013

Faculty Fellow, Hardie Faculty Fellows ProgramCollege of Education, 2011 - 2011

Stanley E. and Ruth B. Dimond Best Dissertation Award, School of EducationUniversity of Michigan - Ann Arbor, 2010 - 2010

STaR FellowNational Science Foundation, 2010 - 2010

List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their StudentsUniversity of Illinois, 2010 - 2010

Susan S. Lipschutz Award for exceptional scholarly achievement, a sense of social responsibility and service, and a lively interest in promoting the success of women in the academic communityUniversity of Michigan - Ann Arbor, 2008 - 2008

School of Education Scholars AwardUniversity of Michigan - Ann Arbor, 2003 - 2008

Beginning Researcher Award to attend the Discovery Research K-12 Principal Investigators ConferenceNational Science Foundation, 2007 - 2007

Jones, Payne, Coxford Award for outstanding doctoral student in mathematics educationUniversity of Michigan - Ann Arbor, 2006 - 2006

Research & Service

My research focuses on how teachers manage students’ prior knowledge. I am interested in examining teachers’ decision-making when handling students’ prior knowledge and the rationality underlying those decisions. I have studied this question in the particular case of the high school geometry class, which has special demands for the teaching and learning of mathematics. Methodologically, I apply Systemic Functional Linguistics to the analysis of both classroom talk and discussions among teachers.

I have found that geometry teachers shape the collective memory of the class with timely actions geared towards making students remember something from the past or towards making something memorable in the future. Moreover, geometry teachers not only control what students have to remember, but also what students have to forget as a result of teaching with a problem.

I am currently leading a project funded by the National Science Foundation. The project, CAREER: Noticing and Using Students' Prior Knowledge in Problem-Based Instruction has the goal of promoting teacher attention to student thinking through their involvement in a professional development intervention. The intervention is novel by combining three activities that have been effective for promoting teacher learning in isolation: Lesson Study, animations of classroom instruction, and video clubs. We are developing a framework for combining these activities in professional development. In addition, we are producing resources to scaffold how teachers consider students' prior knowledge as they plan mathematical tasks for their students.

I have a special interest in the teaching and learning of geometry. In the past, I have investigated relationships between justifications for teaching geometry and the historical development of the American high school geometry curriculum. I have also studied how the use of dynamic geometry provokes new challenges and possibilities in geometry classrooms.


DeJarnette, A., & González, G. (2015) Positioning during group work on a novel task in Algebra Two Journal for Research in Mathematics Education 46 (4), 378-422 link >

González, G., & Eli, J. (2015) Prospective and in-service teachers' perspectives about launching a problem Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education  link >

DeJarnette, A., & González, G. (2015) Teachers' and students' Negotiation moves when teachers scaffold group work Cognition and Instruction 33 (1), 1-45

González, G., DeJarnette, A., & Deal, J. (2014) Assessing and using students’ prior knowledge in problem-based instruction New England Mathematics Journal XLVI link >

DeJarnette, A., Dao, J., & González, G. (2014) Promoting small-group discussions Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School 19 (7), 414-419

DeJarnette, A., Rosado-Lausell, S., & González, G. (2015) Shadow puppets: Exploring a context for similarity and dilations Mathematics Teacher 109 (1), 20-27

Herbst, P., Chen, C., Weiss, M., González, G., Nachlieli, T., Hamlin, M., & Brach, C. (2009) “Doing proofs” in geometry classrooms. Teaching and learning proof across the grades: A K-16 perspective Routledge: New York

González, G. (2015) The use of linguistic resources by mathematics teachers to create analogies Linguistics and Education 30, 81-96 link >

DeJarnette, A., Walczak, M., & González, G. (2014) Students’ concepts- and theorems-in-action on a novel task about similarity School Science and Mathematics 114 (8), 405-414 link >

DeJarnette, A., & González, G. (2013) Building students’ reasoning habits by promoting student-led discussions in an Algebra II class The Mathematics Educator 23 (1), 3-23 link >

González, G., & DeJarnette, A. (2013) Geometric reasoning about a circle problem The Mathematics Teacher 106 (8), 586-591

González, G. (2013) A geometry teacher’s use of a metaphor in relation to a prototypical image to help students remember a set of theorems Journal of Mathematical Behavior 32, 397-414

González, G., & DeJarnette, A. (2013) Leading classroom discussions Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School 18 (9), 544-551

González, G., & Herbst, P. (2013) An oral proof in a geometry class: How linguistic tools can help map the content of a proof Cognition and Instruction 31 (3), 271-313

González, G., & DeJarnette, A. (2012) Agency in a geometry review lesson: A linguistic view on teacher and student division of labor Linguistics and Education 23 (2), 182-199

González, G. (2011) Creating analogies about experiences in ordinary life when doing a proof by contradiction. the 33rd Annual Meeting of the North American Chapter of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education University of Nevada: Reno, NV

González, G. (2011) Who does what?:  A linguistic approach to analyzing teachers’ reactions to videos ZDM-The International Journal on Mathematics Education 43 (1), 65-80

González, G., & Herbst, P. (2009) Students' conceptions of congruency through the use of dynamic geometry software International Journal of Computers for Mathematical Learning 14, 153-182

Nachlieli, T., Herbst, P., & González, G. (2009) Seeing a colleague encourage a student to make an assumption while proving: What teachers put to play in casting an episode of geometry instruction Journal for Research in Mathematics Education 40 (4), 427-459

González, G., & Herbst, P. (2006) Competing arguments for the geometry course: Why were American high school students to study geometry in the twentieth century? International Journal for the History of Mathematics Education 1 (1), 7-33 link >

Herbst, P., González, G., & Macke, M. (2005) How can geometry students understand what it means to define in mathematics? The Mathematics Educator 15 (2), 17-24 link >


Principal InvestigatorCAREER: Noticing and Using Students' Prior Knowledge in Problem-Based Instruction, National Science Foundation, 2013 - 2018

Principal InvestigatorMathematics teachers' decision-making when activating students' prior knowledge in problem-based instruction, Campus Research Board, 2011 - 2012


Mathematics Teacher Education Journal, 2015 - present

ReviewerJournal of Mathematics Teacher Education, 2013 - present

ReviewerJournal of Mathematical Behavior, 2011 - 2012

ReviewerPsychology of Mathematics Education-North American Chapter, 2005 - 2012

ReviewerMathematics Teacher Journal, 

ReviewerJournal of Mathematics Teacher Education, 2011 - present

ReviewerJournal of Mathematical Behavior, 2011 - present

ReviewerMathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 2011 - present

ReviewerEducational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 2010 - 2010

ReviewerZDM - The International Journal on Mathematics Education, 2010 - 2010


Intro Tchg in a Diverse Societ Orients the student to ways in which English, Mathematics, Science, or Social Studies is learned in middle school and senior high school settings. Integrates an introduction to the use of technology as both a tool and a context for teaching and learning. As participants in a series of learning activities, students will reflect on the teaching and learning of English, Mathematics, Science, or Social Studies from an inquiry oriented perspective. Coursework is integrated with a middle or high school field experience to connect theory with practice in an examination of research and current trends in English, Mathematics, Science, or Social Studies education. Course Information: 3 undergraduate hours. 3 graduate hours. Prerequisite: EPS 201, EPSY 201 or equivalent, concurrent enrollment in EOL 440, and admission to the Secondary Teacher Education Program.

Prof Development in Math Ed Considers research perspectives, policies and practices associated with the professional development of mathematics teachers. Specifically, students will examine what policymakers recommend for effective professional development, what research findings seem to suggest, how schools do professional development for successful mathematics teaching, and the implications of policy and real world practices for equality of opportunity for mathematics learning.

Teaching and Learning Geometry This course concentrates on the teaching and learning of geometry in middle school and high school by examining the history of school geometry, comparing curricular expectations and rationales for geometry instruction over time. The course provides an overview of theoretical models regarding the teaching and learning of geometry. At the same time, the course provides opportunities for discussing practical issues of teaching geometry with work on geometrical problems and laboratory sessions using dynamic geometry. Course Information: Prerequisite: Acceptance into a graduate program.

Teaching and Learning Algebra This course examines perspectives about the teaching and learning of algebra in middle school and high school. Topics include an examination of historical perspectives on algebra in the school curriculum, a study of the nature of algebra and algebraic thinking, an analysis of teaching strategies for teaching algebra, an examination of documents on algebraic reasoning, and explorations of the use of technological tools to support the teaching and learning of algebra. Course Information: Prerequisite: Acceptance into a graduate program.

Discourse in STEM Classrooms An overview of relevant literature regarding discourse in STEM classrooms with emphasis on teachers' perspectives, students' perspectives, and interactions between the teacher and the students. Discusses research methodologies for the study of discourse in STEM classrooms and implications of research for the education and the professional development of pre-service and in-service teachers. Course Information: Prerequisite: Acceptance into a graduate program.

Gloriana González Rivera

Associate Professor, Curriculum & Instruction



387 Education Building
1310 S. Sixth St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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