Volume 13 · Number 1 · Pages 175–177
Not All Problems Are Equal: Is Varela’s Concept of a Problem Transferable to Mathematics Education Research?

Karim Zahidi

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Open peer commentary on the article “From Problem Solving to Problem Posing, and from Strategies to Laying Down a Path in Solving: Taking Varela’s Ideas to Mathematics Education Research” by Jérôme Proulx & Jean-François Maheux. Upshot: I examine to what extend Varela’s remarks on problem-solving can be applied to mathematical problem-solving. I argue that despite similarities between Varela’s epistemological model and recent advances in mathematics education research on problem-solving, trying to fit ideas and concepts from the latter domain in the Varelian mold runs the risk of misconstruing fundamental aspects of mathematical problem-solving.


Zahidi K. (2017) Not all problems are equal: Is Varela’s concept of a problem transferable to mathematics education research? Constructivist Foundations 13(1): 175–177. http://constructivist.info/13/1/175

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