for the learning of mathematics

an international journal of mathematics education

Keith Weber ,  Juan Pablo Mejia-Ramos - Vol. 35 Num. 2 (2015)
 On relative and absolute conviction in mathematics


Conviction is a central construct in mathematics education research on justification and proof. In this paper, we claim that it is important to distinguish between absolute conviction and relative conviction. We argue that researchers in mathematics education frequently have not done so and this has lead to researchers making unwarranted claims about students' standards of conviction. We illustrate the importance of distinguishing between absolute conviction and relative conviction by critically examining claims based on qualitative evidence that researchers have made in the literature.