Support for non-specialist mathematics teachers

Many mathematics departments contain at least one colleague who would not consider themselves a mathematics specialist. In my department, over the years I have welcomed teachers of PE, geography, business studies, ICT… Each were excellent teachers, keen to learn and wanted to do the best for their students. What these teachers often required was pedagogical support: successful strategies which enhance the teaching and learning of mathematics. When these teachers were unsure of what approach to employ they tended to default to teaching topics in the way they were taught mathematics, sometimes many years ago!

CPDThere are a number of initiatives to support teachers who do not have a maths background. At STEM Learning we offer the course “Building confidence as a non-specialist mathematics teacher”, an ENTHUSE supported residential course held at the National STEM Learning Centre in York. By attending this course non-specialist maths teachers will

  • understand what makes good mathematics teaching
  • develop strategies for overcoming the difficulties typically faced by non-specialist teachers
  • learn how to teach for deeper understanding in a range of mathematical topics
  • explore strategies that help to build students’ resilience
  • develop questioning techniques to encourage mathematical thinking

In addition we are supporting our local Maths Hub deliver Teacher Subject Specialism Training (TSST). See the attached for further details. If you are not in the York area find out whether your local maths hub offers the TSST programme. For more information about maths hubs see


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