Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Crissie M. Jameson


In a southeastern state school district, the educators understood little about the scaffolding practices of ninth-grade teachers of Foundations of Algebra (FOA), a remedial course. FOA is a mathematics course designed for students who need substantial help to master the required standards. An increasing number of students in 2 high schools failed FOA; hence, they were not prepared for Algebra 1. The purpose of this qualitative exploratory case study was to explore the scaffolding strategies used by FOA teachers. Bruner's constructivist theory and Vygotsky's zone of proximal development (ZPD) theory were used to guide this study. The research questions addressed how FOA teachers described their scaffolding strategies and how they scaffold their students' learning. Eleven high school mathematics teachers who taught FOA for at least one year volunteered and participated in the study. Interviews, observations, and document data were analyzed through deductive and inductive analysis using a priori, open, and axial coding strategies. This study's findings showed gaps in FOA teachers' knowledge and practices regarding the following scaffolding strategies: activating prior knowledge, manipulatives, visuals, teacher modeling, and technology. A 3-day professional development (PD) workshop was developed to address these gaps. Students, teachers, and administrators may benefit from the PD provided by school administrators. This project could contribute to positive social change when teachers improve and increase their scaffolding practices for students who ultimately increase learning and academic achievement.