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Assistant Research Professor
Neil Hatfield


Neil J. Hatfield is a Assistant Professor of Research at Penn State.

He received his PhD in Mathematics Education from Arizona State University in 2019. He received his MS in Education-Teaching Math from Northwest Missouri State University in 2011, and a BS in Mathematics from Doane University in 2009.

Neil's research in Statistics Education focuses on understanding how students think about and learn statistical concepts. He currently focuses the meanings that students have for distribution and closely related ideas (e.g., randomness, probability, and stochastic processes). In addition to this research, Neil explores the impacts that web applets can have on student learning, the impact of teacher actions on STEM diversity, and developing non-test assessment methods for getting at student understandings.

He has contributed to BOAST as a faculty mentor and developer since 2019. He also serves as the current coordinator for the Statistics and Data Science Education Working Group for the Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education SIG of the MAA.


Honors and Awards

  • ASU's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Outstanding Lecture of the Year Nominee (2017-2018)
  • Robert G. Maule Excellence in Teaching Mathematics Award (2017)
  • Graduate and Professional Student Association's Teaching Excellence Award (2016-2017)
  • Honorable Citation-Research on Undergraduate Mathematics Education (2015; Frames of Reference paper)
  • Floyd L. Downs Teaching of Mathematics Fellowship Award.



  • Hatfield, N. J. (in press). A Meanings-based framework for textbook analysis.
  • Hatfield, N. J. (2018). Students’ conveyed meanings for probability. In M. A. Sorto, A. White, & L. Guyot (Eds.), Looking back, looking forward. Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference on Teaching Statistics. Kyoto, Japan; Voorburg, The Netherlands: International Statistical Institute.
  • Thompson, P. W., Hatfield, N. J., Yoon, H., Joshua, S., and Byerley, C. (2017) Covariational Hatfield, p. 3 reasoning among U.S. and South Korean secondary mathematics teachers. Journal of Mathematical Behavior, 48, pp. 95-111.
  • Middleton, Hatfield, N. J. (2016). An initial look at students’ conveyed meanings for probability. In T. Fukawa-Connelly, N. Infante, M. Wawro, and S. Brown (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th Annual Conference on Research In Undergraduate Mathematics Education (pp. 190- 203). Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Mathematical Association of America.
  • J. A., Tallman, M., Hatfield, N. J., & Davis, O. (2015). Taking the severe out of perseverance: Strategies for building mathematical determination. In N. Alpert & C Kurose, (Eds.), Mathematics Instruction for Perseverance. Chicago, Il: Spencer Foundation.
  • Thompson, P. W., Byerley, C., and Hatfield N. J. (2014) Schemes for thinking with magnitudes: A hypothesis about foundational reasoning abilities in algebra. In L. P. Steffe, L. L. Hatfield, & K. C. Moore (Eds.), Epistemic algebra students: Emerging models of students’ algebraic knowing (pp. 1-24). Laramie, WY: University of Wyoming.
  • Thompson, P. W., Byerley, C., and Hatfield, N. J. (2013). A conceptual approach to calculus made possible by technology. Computers in the Schools.



STAT 461 - Analysis of Variance