In a world that’s becoming increasingly complex, where success is driven not only by what you know, but by what you can do with what you know, it’s more important than ever for our youth to be equipped with the knowledge and skills to solve tough problems, gather and evaluate evidence, and make sense of information. These are the types of skills that students learn by studying science, technology, engineering, and mathematics—subjects collectively known as STEM. There is an inadequate number of teachers pursuing degrees in these fields and this makes a degree in mathematics highly sought after by school districts.
Offering skills in modern mathematics and computation, a teaching degree in Mathematics develops your knowledge of investigative teaching techniques, curriculum planning, effective student communication and more to prepare you for a career in classroom instruction. Pursuing a mathematics education degree allows you to study mathematics and pedagogy under the guidance of professional mathematics and education faculty who will support your goals to becoming a successful teacher by working together to ensure the program equips all students with the knowledge they need to become highly effective mathematics teachers.
Through a combination of courses in mathematics, technology, and methods, you will learn how to transform mathematics content into teachable material for K-12 students. A supervised field teaching experience will help prepare you for a career as a classroom mathematics teacher. The University’s Math Club, as well as the Society for Future Teachers, provides additional opportunities for academic and professional growth through interaction with professors and classmates.
While you’ll find yourself well-prepared for a career in teaching mathematics, teachers are required to continue their education and there are many areas a mathematics education degree can be taken:
Graduate School Programs
|Catholic School Leadership|
|Curriculum and Instruction|
|Deaf and Hard of Hearing|
|Early Childhood Education|
|Guidance and Counseling|
|Higher Education and Student Affairs|
|Online Teaching and eLearning|
|Teaching English as a Second Language|
Employers of Alumni
|Public, private and parochial schools in the tri-county area, greater Michigan, and out-of-state or overseas.|
Viollca Sumbulla graduated from Madonna University with a minor in Elementary Education and a major in Mathematics. She said: “I was supported by well-prepared and caring professors who always took their time to get to know every single student.”
“Madonna degree has helped me to use Positive Behavior Support to students in crisis in my caseload, so they can reach their full potential. Also, the teaching education has played a role in full understanding of common core and students data, which will result in implementation of student-centered lessons."
Amber Kirvan is a mathematics teacher at Livonia Ladywood High School. She was hired immediately out of student teaching “thanks to Dr. Karen Obsniuk’s high recommendation and because the school felt that teachers from Madonna are well prepared.”
“Having to align lesson plans to state standards in all of my classes (at Madonna) was hugely beneficial because all teachers at my school, including myself, had to go through each standard pertaining to our subject matter and align each of our course’s curriculums,” Kirvan said.
Ph.D. Oakland University
M.S. Oakland University
B.S. Madonna University
Franciscan Center S217-D
Dr. Susan Toma is an Associate Professor and the Chair of the Mathematics and Computer Science Department. She joined the full-time faculty of Madonna University in 2010. She earned a Ph.D. degree in Applied Mathematical Sciences in 2009 and an M.S. degree in Industrial Applied Mathematics in 2006 from Oakland University. She is also a Madonna University alumna where she completed a B.S. degree in Mathematics.
Dr. Toma has taught a broad range of mathematics courses, including Contemporary Mathematics, Pre-calculus, Applied Calculus, Calculus with Analytic Geometry I, II and III, Modern Algebra, Introduction to Real Analysis, Discrete Mathematics, and Probability and Statistics. She also regularly mentors senior seminar mathematics research projects. Moreover, Dr. Toma actively engages her students in various national and international mathematical competitions.
In addition, she is the advisor of the Math Club student organization at Madonna University. Dr. Toma is a member of the Mathematical Association of America, American Mathematical Society, and the Michigan Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators.
M.S. Western Michigan University
B.S. Grand Valley State University
Math for Elementary Certification
Franciscan Center S217-G
I have been teaching mathematics, and mathematics education courses at Madonna University for 10 years. I teach a proper range of courses from introductory algebra all the way through upper-level courses. My favorite courses to teach are the education courses. Helping students become future educators is a passion of mine. I also enjoy mentoring senior seminar presentations, it allows me to help students understand how to conduct research in mathematics and mathematics education. My research interests focus on how to use technology for teaching mathematics, and how to get teacher candidates to understand how technology can change the curriculum.
Presenting at the Michigan Council for Teachers of Mathematics conference each year allows me to help share my understanding of how technology is being used do you transform mathematics education in the current K-12 classrooms. I am also involved in a research group at Wayne State University; working with other graduate students and Wayne State faculty doing research on the changes in teacher evaluations by the state. Researching and studying the key areas in how highly affective mathematics lessons by teachers in the elementary curriculum are assessed allows for me to understand what teacher candidates need to be equipped with to be successful as mathematics teachers.
Ph.D. Wayne State University
M.S. Michigan State University
B.S. University of California, San Diego
Franciscan Center S217-P
Professor Mike Johnson has been a full-time faculty member at Madonna University since 2004. He obtained his B.S. degree at UC San Diego where he majored in Computer Engineering and minored in Mathematics. He then moved to Phoenix, Arizona where he worked for two years as a software engineer for GTE. After working in the Chicago area for AT&T Bell Labs for the next two years, he moved to Michigan to attend Michigan State University where he graduated with a Master's degree in Computer Science. He then completed his college studies at Wayne State University in 2003 when he earned a Ph.D. in Computer Science.
His main area of concentration is Computer Science and has taught a wide variety of computer science courses ranging from the introductory Computer Science I course to the upper level Computer Architecture course. His favorite subject to teach is any class that covers software development or web design. In addition to computer science courses, he also enjoys teaching algebra and precalculus mathematics courses.