This page serves as a sort of journal for Geoff’s doctoral program, separate from the Emergentmath blog. Here, Geoff will share thoughts and reflections on classes, insights into literature and other PhD-related musings. While you’re here, feel free to explore Geoff’s main blog, various “miniseries,” and select blog posts. Here’s is Geoff’s About Me page.

Journal: Research can go a long way

Two of my classes this week involved discussions around publishing research in journals, specifically with an aim toward “top-tier” journals. A mere 10 weeks ago, I was unaware that there even were tiers of research journals. Now I know that I should be writing with an eye towards those exemplary journals.

That said, one thing that also resonated this week – and was actually mentioned in both of the aforementioned classes – that one can also write for more widely released journals, or practitioner journals. I found this actually strangely heartening. One of the tensions I’ve had about my future writings is that research ought to be highly rigorous, but also actionable. Rigorous research papers are often overwrought with methods, technical writing, description of validity, etc. These are important qualities for research papers to be sure. However, that level of rigor acts as a barrier to implementation. Teachers rarely read research journals – why would they? That’s a terrible use of time. However, they might read books or practitioner journals (such as NCTM’s member journals).

Should a researcher have a robust enough study, they might be able to get (a) a research publication, (b) a practitioner publication, and (c) a conference presentation or two out of it. That’s a high level of impact that goes beyond just the research publication. That’s the kind of impact I hope to be able to have.