Department of Teaching & Learning

Candace Walkington

Assistant Professor



Ph.D., University of Texas
3101 University Blvd
Suite 345
Dallas, 75205
Box 455
214-768-3072
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Dr. Candace Walkington is an Assistant Professor in Teaching and Learning at Southern Methodist University, specializing in mathematics education. She holds a B.S. and M.S. in Mathematics from Texas A&M University, and she is a former NSF-GK12 Fellow and college mathematics professor. She received her Ph.D. in Mathematics Education from University of Texas at Austin. She was also an IES Postdoctoral Fellow in Mathematical Thinking, Learning, and Instruction at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Dr. Walkington’s research examines how abstract mathematical ideas can become connected to students’ concrete, everyday experiences such that they become more understandable. She conducts research on “personalizing” mathematics instruction to students’ out of-school interests in areas like sports, music, shopping, and video games. She also examines ways to connect mathematical practices with physical motions including gestures. Her work draws upon theories of situated and embodied cognition, and she is an active member of the learning sciences community. Her research uses both qualitative methods like discourse and gesture analysis, and quantitative methods like hierarchical linear modeling and educational data mining.

Dr. Walkington's dissertation study and a subsequent follow-up study was funded by Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center (PSLC), and she was awarded the “Graduate Student Research Award” by Division C of the American Educational Research Association (AERA). She recently received a Sam Taylor Research Fellowship Grant and an AERA research grant to extend her work on personalization and mathematics story problems. She was named a 2013 STaR Fellow alongside other early career mathematics educators. In 2012, her research on personalization was featured on the cover of Education Week.

Dr. Walkington has worked with the UTeach secondary math and science teacher preparation program at the University of Texas at Austin, as well as the Gates Foundation’s Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) Project. She collaborates with mathematics curriculum companies like Reasoning Mind and Carnegie Learning. She has published her work in journals like Mathematical Thinking and Learning, Journal of Mathematical Behavior, and Journal of Educational Psychology. She teaches courses for pre-service and in-service mathematics teachers, and she engages in service for a number of journals and professional organizations.

Recent Publications:


Walkington, C. (2013). Using learning technologies to personalize instruction to student interests: The impact of relevant contexts on performance and learning outcomes. Journal of Educational Psychology, 105(4), 932-945.

Walkington, C., Nathan, M., Wolfgram, M., Alibali, M., & Srisurichan, R. (in press). Bridges and barriers to constructing conceptual cohesion across modalities and temporalities: Challenges of STEM integration in the precollege engineering classroom. Chapter in Engineering in PreCollege Settings: Research into Practice. Johannes Strobel, Senay Purzer, Monica Cardella, (Eds.), Sense Publishers.

Walkington, C., Petrosino, A., & Sherman, M. (2013). Supporting algebraic reasoning through personalized story scenarios: How situational understanding mediates performance and strategies. Mathematical Thinking and Learning, 15(2), 89-120.

Walkington, C., Sherman, M., & Howell, E. (in press). Connecting Algebra to sports, video games, and social networking: How personalized learning makes ideas “stick.” Mathematics Teacher.

Walkington, C., Sherman, M., & Petrosino, A. (2012). ‘Playing the game’ of story problems: Coordinating situation-based reasoning with algebraic representation. Journal of Mathematical Behavior, 31(2), 174-195.