Research Library

Research, programs, and policies to support queer students in secondary mathematics environments remain largely underdeveloped and undertheorized. Mathematics education research has attended more closely to how race and gender are linked with dominant discourses of participation and mathematical performance. In this synthesis, we conducted a broad search of literature, resulting in 81 articles, related to queer student experience in all STEM environments to highlight potential practices to support inclusive environments specifically in secondary mathematics. Drawing on a queer stem identity framework (Mattheis, Arellano, Yoder, 2019) we highlight the unique nature of queer identity (e.g., the potential for one’s queer identity to be invisible) that positions queerness as unseen and irrelevant to the pursuit of STEM. The perceived masculine and heteronormative nature of mathematics environment impacts queer students when defining their queer identity and coming out in the classroom, creating a cognitively stressful experience, and leading to less robust mathematical identity formation. In order to help promote queer students in navigating these settings we document how role models and curriculum allow for a reconstruction of the nature and mathematics by promoting a connected, inclusive, and social discipline. We conclude by highlighting the need for future studies and implications for practices in order to create environments that promote the development and visibility of queer mathematics students.