Research and articles


Mathematics Teaching 281, 2022 

In Building an inclusive community of mathematical inquiry,  Hollie Walton and Andrew Blair argue that inquiry classrooms are equitable classrooms. 

Hollie and Andrew  discussed the article with MT editor Tony Cotton for a podcast. They also ran a workshop at the Mixed Attainment Maths conference in London (UK) in July 2022.

The relationship between inquiry and instruction

(Mathematics Teaching 277, 2021) Andrew Blair discusses the relationship between inquiry and instruction in two models of educational psychology.

Planning and unplanning mathematical inquiry 

(Mathematics Teaching 271, 2020) Andrew Blair considers the detailed planning in preparation for inquiry and an openness to ‘unplanning’ in the moment of inquiry.

Inquisitive about inquiry? Loaded with cognitive load?

(Mathematics Teaching 270, 2020) Mike Ollerton, Jude Stratton and Anne Watson on the limitations of cognitive load theory and the forms of thinking promoted by inquiry.

Capturing mathematical curiosity with notice and wonder

(Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 2019) Aaron M. Rumack and DeAnn Huinker explain how the Notice and Wonder Routine promotes a culture of sense making.

Models for teaching mathematics revisited

(Mathematics Teaching 268, 2019) Andrew Blair and Helen Hindle contrast the 'path-smoothing' small steps approach to 'challenging' inquiry and student-led learning.

Inquiry Maths: an idea whose time has come

(Mathematics Teaching 240, 2014) Andrew Blair looks at the nature of inquiry and shows how it is compatible with the inductive and deductive nature of mathematics.

Inquiry in Mathematics Education 

(2012) Artigue and Baptist lay out the theoretical  model of the EU-funded Fibonacci Project in this booklet.

Getting Started with Student Inquiry 

(2011) A summary of the roles of student and educator in the inquiry classroom.

Effective Questioning and Responding in the Mathematics Classroom

(2010) John Mason on developing a conjecturing atmosphere.

Inquiry Teaching

(Mathematics Teaching 211, 2008) Andrew Blair discusses how the Inquiry Maths model harmonises concepts with the method of learning.

When the Problem is Not the Question and the Solution is not the Answer

(1990) Magdalene Lampert's seminal paper about mathematical knowing and teaching.

Essays and theses

PGDE essay

University of Edinburgh, 2023

Emily Borrill, a newly qualified teacher, compares philosophical inquiry (PwC) with Inquiry Maths. 

Emily submitted the essay as part of her postgraduate qualification in mathematics education (PGDE).

MPhil thesis

University of Cambridge, 2017

In her MPhil thesis, Jane Moss explains how she and her colleagues used a lesson study approach to implement Inquiry-Based Tasks. Aiming to develop reasoning in A-level classes, the teachers "evolved from a group of practitioners into a collaborative democratic partnership, where rich dialogic and supportive discussions emerged."


Reading list

This is our reading list of books, chapters, PhD theses and articles from research journals about inquiry in mathematics classrooms. Topics covered include the nature of mathematical inquiry, classroom practice, outcomes of inquiry learning, and training of teachers in inquiry methods. Contact Inquiry Maths with suggestions to include on the reading list.

Last updated in May 2023.

Research questions

Postgraduate students and trainee teachers who are interested in carrying out research into the Inquiry Maths model and mathematical inquiry more broadly might consider research questions related to the following topics:


Inquiry Maths workshops

There have been Inquiry Maths workshops at the following universities:

Birmingham (UK)

Brighton (UK)

Cambridge (UK)

London Metropolitan (UK)

Manchester Metropolitan (UK)

Maryland (US)

Part of a workshop on approaches to learning mathematics.

Nottingham (UK)

Sheffield Hallam (UK)

St. Mary's (UK)

UCL Institute of Education, London (UK)

Sussex (UK)

Warwick (UK)

Trainee teachers' reflections on Inquiry Maths

London Metropolitan University 

Trainee teachers at London Metropolitan University have been using Inquiry Maths in their practice since 2016. Some have created their own prompts, while others have devised new concepts with which to plan and analyse inquiry lessons. Below are links to a selection of the trainee's projects:

Stem and leaves

New fractions prompt

Developing independent and self-aware learners

Planning and evaluating

New prompt on prime factors

University of Brighton

Trainee teachers on a course at the University of Brighton (UK) in 2014-15 review an article about Inquiry Maths.

Inquiry Maths reviewed 

Masters in Education interview

Chelsea Young, an MYP teacher at the Canadian International School in Singapore, contacted the Inquiry Maths website with four questions for her Masters in Education course. Dr Andrew Blair replied.