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Personal Profile of Dr. Deborah Loewenberg Ball

Deborah Loewenberg Ball is the William H. Payne Collegiate Professor in education at the University of Michigan, and an Arthur F. Thurnau Professor. She currently serves as dean of the School of Education and as director of TeachingWorks.

She taught elementary school for more than 15 years, and continues to teach mathematics to elementary students every summer. Ball serves on the National Science Board, the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute Board of Trustees, and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Board of Directors, and chairs the Spencer Foundation Board of Directors.

Ball’s research focuses on the practice of mathematics instruction, and on the improvement of teacher training and development. She is an expert on teacher education, with a particular interest in how professional training and experience combine to equip beginning teachers with the skills and knowledge needed for responsible practice. Her work is informed by strong links both to the arts and sciences and to professional preparation in other domains.

Through TeachingWorks, she is leading an effort to develop a comprehensive professional training curriculum that spans initial training through at least the first three years of teaching practice, with corresponding assessments to determine whether beginning teachers are ready to be responsible for a classroom of students. This curriculum focuses on a set of core skills and knowledge that are “high-leverage” for responsible teaching. Skill with these tasks of teaching is crucial for all teachers if they are to help each of their students achieve. In addition, the curriculum addresses, in the specialized ways needed for teaching, the subject matter content that is high-leverage for teachers, including essential topics and skills represented in the Common Core State Standards.

Ball has authored or co-authored more than 150 publications and has lectured and made numerous major presentations around the world. Her research has been recognized with several awards and honors, and she has served on several national and international commissions and panels focused on policy initiatives and the improvement of education, including the National Mathematics Advisory Panel and the Commission on the Future of Undergraduate Education. She has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Education, and is a fellow of the American Mathematics Society and the American Educational Research Association.
Current/Future Committee Membership
Name Office Start Date End Date
Board of Trustees Mar 05, 2011 Feb 28, 2019
Educational Advisory Committee EAC Chair, 3/7/15-3/1/18 Mar 07, 2015 Mar 01, 2019

Past Committee Membership
Name Office Start Date End Date
Board of Trustees Feb 13, 2003 Mar 01, 2007
Board of Trustees Mar 01, 2007 Mar 01, 2011
Education Committee Chair Mar 01, 2003 Feb 28, 2015
Educational Advisory Committee Chair, EAC Mar 01, 2003 Mar 01, 2011
Educational Advisory Committee Chair, EAC Mar 05, 2011 Mar 01, 2015
Long Range Planning Committee Apr 01, 2005 Apr 01, 2006
  1. Workshop Critical Issues in Mathematics Education 2016: Observing, Evaluating and Improving Mathematics Teaching from the Early Grades through the University

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    Feb 11, 2016
    08:30 AM - 09:45 AM
      (How) Can we “see” the work of teaching mathematics?
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
    Feb 12, 2016
    03:30 PM - 04:30 PM
      A conversation about practical next steps
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
  2. Workshop Critical Issues in Mathematics Education 2014: The role of the mathematics department in the mathematical preparation of teachers

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    Mar 26, 2014
    04:45 PM - 06:00 PM
      Plenary Session: A conversation about the mathematical preparaton of teachers and the challenges universities face
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Herb Clemens (University of Utah), Hung-Hsi Wu (University of California, Berkeley)
    Mar 27, 2014
    08:30 AM - 09:30 AM
      Plenary Session: Panel - Understanding mathematics teacher education
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Linda Gojak (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics), Diana Suddreth (Utah State Office of Education)
    Mar 28, 2014
    04:35 PM - 05:00 PM
      Plenary Session (closing session): Reflections on ideas discussed at the workshop
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Jim Lewis (University of Nebraska)
  3. Workshop Using Partnerships to Strengthen Elementary Mathematics Teacher Education

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    Dec 11, 2008
    09:00 AM - 10:15 AM
      Introduction to the Workshop
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), William McCallum (University of Arizona)
    Dec 12, 2008
    09:00 AM - 10:05 AM
      Forming Partnerships Across Institutional Boundaries (budgetary, departmental, college)
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Jim Lewis (University of Nebraska), William McCallum (University of Arizona)
    01:30 PM - 03:10 PM
      Learning Mathematics for Elementary Teaching at the University of Michigan
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Hyman Bass (University of Michigan), Tim Boerst, Laurie Sleep
    05:00 PM - 05:30 PM
      Closing Session
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
  4. Workshop Critical Issues in Mathematics Education 2008: Teaching and Learning Algebra

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    May 14, 2008
    06:45 PM - 07:15 PM
      The National Mathematics Advisory Panel Report: Summing Up and Taking Stock
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
    May 16, 2008
    05:15 PM - 05:45 PM
      Connections among the questions
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
  5. Workshop Raising the floor: Progress and setbacks in the struggle for quality mathematics education for all

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    May 08, 2006
    11:30 AM - 11:50 AM
      Charge to the Workshop
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
    May 10, 2006
    11:00 AM - 11:55 AM
      Seeking a Workshop Consensus
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
  6. Workshop The Mathematical Knowledge for Teaching (K-8): Why, What and How?

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    May 26, 2005
    08:30 AM - 08:45 AM
      Teacher's Knowledge of Mathematics
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
    11:00 AM - 12:30 PM
      What Mathematical Knowledge, Skill, and Habits Do Teachers Need in Order to Teach Effectively?
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
    03:15 PM - 03:30 PM
      What Mathematical Knowledge, Skill, and Habits Do Teachers Need in Order to Teach Effectively?
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)
    05:25 PM - 05:25 PM
      Consolidation in Whole Group--What Mathematical Knowledge or Skill is Required to do this Work?
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Judith Flowers, Thomas Parker, Akihiko Takahashi (DePaul University), Alejandro Uribe, Cheryl Wilson
    May 27, 2005
    07:00 PM - 12:00 AM
      What Can Mathematics Departments and Schools of Education Do to Help Teachers Develop Such Knowledge?
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Dan Fallon, Roger Howe (Yale University), Richard (James) Milgram
    May 28, 2005
    10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
      What Are the Critical Next Steps with Respect to Policy? What are Directions for Research? Come Back to Evidence.
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), Ruth Cossey (Mills College), David Eisenbud (MSRI - Mathematical Sciences Research Institute), Jeremy Kilpatrick
  7. Workshop Assessing Students’ Mathematics Learning: Issues, Costs and Benefits

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    Mar 07, 2004
    01:30 PM - 02:00 PM
      Opening Session
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan), David Eisenbud (MSRI - Mathematical Sciences Research Institute)
    Mar 08, 2004
    08:45 AM - 10:00 AM
      Live Interview Session with 6th Grade Student.
    Deborah Ball (University of Michigan)