Master of Arts in Higher Education (MAHE) Theses

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Todd Ream

Second Advisor

Scott Gaier

Third Advisor

Tim Herrmann

Distinguished Theses



Mathematics occupies a dynamic place in general education curriculum. The subject once served primarily as a language to explain the natural world and more recently adopted more usefulness-centered value in research and society. Changes in K-12 curriculum standards over the last two decades have again reoriented the subject toward quantitative reasoning (QR) acquisition, responding to demands by employers for greater facility with quantitative information and recommendations by researchers with regard to learning acquisition and transfer in mathematics. After defining components of QR, this study examined mathematics curriculum at highly ranked liberal arts colleges and universities across a ten-year period to determine whether higher education institutions have responded to experts’ calls and incoming students’ shifting preparation. An analysis of course catalog documents revealed positive trends in at least some areas of QR education and raised implications for practice within general education and for future research in mathematics curriculum.


Granted the honor of the 2016 Distinguished Thesis Award.