Faculty Profile

Jerilynn Lepak

Jerilynn Lepak

Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education

Email: lepakj@spu.edu
Phone: 206-281-2148
Office: Otto Miller Hall 115

Education: BA, Winona State University, 1996; PhD, Michigan State University, 2013. At SPU since 2015.

Dr. Jerilynn Lepak is responsible for elementary mathematics education, and as such bridges both the Math Department and the School of Education. She was previously an assistant professor of mathematics education in the mathematics department at the University of Central Arkansas. There she gained teaching experience with both elementary- and middle-level math, both methods and content. Prior to embarking on her formal graduate studies in mathematics education, she had a decade of experience teaching middle school and high school mathematics.

Dr. Lepak’s research focuses on prospective teachers’ conceptions of the content knowledge required to teach representations, operations, and conceptual and procedural understanding of rational numbers. How does their pedagogical content knowledge impact their reactions to students’ solutions to problems? She also held a post-doctoral research fellowship at UC Berkeley, where she developed assessments to measure student learning in algebra, using them to identify the most effective pedagogical approaches.

Dr. Lepak has been a Christian believer since her college days. Her faith has infused every part of her life, from parenting to teaching prospective teachers, to conducting research in education.

Selected publications

Lepak, J. (2014). Enhancing students’ written mathematical arguments. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 20(4), 212–19.

Bieda, K., & Lepak, J. (2012). Examples as tools for constructing justifications. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 17(9), 520–23.

Please view Dr. Lepak’s CV (PDF) for additional publications.

Why I Teach at SPU

Jerilynn Lepak, Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education

“I believe that understanding and being successful in mathematics have profound implications for students’ career choices — and developing this understanding of number and basic operations is crucial to understanding higher-level mathematics. I teach elementary mathematics education because I want to prepare prospective teachers to develop this understanding in their future students. I teach at SPU because I have found the prospective teachers to be committed to creating student-centered environments where understanding is their primary goal.”