The ostensive dimension through the lenses of two didactic approaches

Ferdinando Arzarello, Marianna Bosch, Josep Gascón, Cristina Sabena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The paper presents how two different theories- the APC-space and the ATD-can frame in a complementary way the semiotic (or ostensive) dimension of mathematical activity in the way they approach teaching and learning phenomena. The two perspectives coincide in the same subject: the importance given to ostensive objects (gestures, discourses, written symbols, etc.) not only as signs but also as essential tools of mathematical practices. On the one hand, APC-space starts from a general semiotic analysis in terms of "semiotic bundles" that is to be integrated into a more specific epistemological analysis of mathematical activity. On the other hand, ATD proposes a general model of mathematical knowledge and practice in terms of "praxeologies" that has to include a more specific analysis of the role of ostensive objects in the development of mathematical activities in the classroom. The articulation of both theoretical perspectives is proposed as a contribution to the development of suitable frames for Networking Theories in mathematics education. © FIZ Karlsruhe 2008.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-188
JournalZDM - International Journal on Mathematics Education
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2008


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