Mathematical Flexibility: Theoretical, Methodological, and Educational Considerations


  • Marian Hickendorff Orcid
  • Jake McMullen Orcid
  • Lieven Verschaffel Orcid


The current paper presents an introduction to a special issue focusing on mathematical flexibility, which is an important aspect of mathematical thinking and a cherished, but capricious, outcome of mathematics education. Mathematical flexibility involves the flexible, creative, meaningful, and innovative use of mathematical concepts, relations, representations, and strategies. In this introduction we discuss the most relevant theoretical, methodological, and educational considerations related to mathematical flexibility, which form the background of the empirical studies presented in the special issue. Collectively, these studies provide a broader understanding of the mathematical flexibility, its subcomponents, influences, and malleability.