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8 million to “Mattecoach på nätet”

Stefan and Malin sitting in a light environment behind their computers discussing something.
Stefan Stenbom and Malin Jansson (Digital Learning) are engaged in the project.
Published Aug 29, 2022

With 8 new million from Erling-Persson's foundation, Mattecoach på nätet (Mathcoach online) will expand geographically, and the number of math coaches will increase.

Trouble with maths? Are you a primary and secondary school student who wants help with homework? There's help available - online. Since 2009, the service Mattecoach has been available online in the evenings. Here, students can get help from students studying to be teachers in mathematics or from future engineers who enjoy teaching. The initiative is a collaboration between KTH, Linköping University, Chalmers, and Aston University.

At the moment, Mattecoach is available at Linköping and Chalmers. At KTH, it has been inactive for a couple of years. The concept can be brought back to life when Erling-Persson's foundation contributes SEK eight new million over the next two years.

"All three universities will recruit and train new math coaches," says Malin Jansson  at Digital Learning and the operations manager-to-be at Mattecoach with responsibility for the research parts of the project.

In addition to new coaches, funding is needed to develop the system and market Mattecoach in, among other things, social media. Another part of the money will go to research around maths coaching, online learning, and discussing math via chat. But Mattecoach will also expand geographically.

"The next step is to go national with Mattecoach. From being a local initiative collaborating with municipalities, we will offer help to students throughout Sweden," says Malin.

Surveys show that young people's interest in mathematics and NO is decreasing. Here, Mattecoach hopes to contribute and give all students the same opportunities for help, regardless of background, location, home conditions, or level of education of the parents.

"The students are anonymous in the system, they are not assessed, which creates a freer way for the students to express themselves. They can ask questions that they may not always dare to ask in the classroom and discover the fun of mathematics and problem solving together with someone passionate about the subject."

The contributor is the Erling-Persson Foundation, founded by Stefan Persson in 1999 in memory of his father Erling Persson, who started Hennes & Mauritz. And the founder of Mattecoach online, Stefan Stenbom  at Digital learning at KTH, is enthusiastic:

"The foundation has three purpose areas: entrepreneurship, research support, and promoting the development of children and young people. Mattecoach covers all three of their legs."

"For us, the project is also an opportunity to offer future teachers to improve and develop skills in learning in online environments and increase their digital competence."

And how do you become a math coach?

"All coaches take the KTH course LV118U Basic online coaching 2.0 credits before they start as a coach", explains Stefan.

"The course is about tutoring students in mathematics remotely through digital tools. Communication and learning at a distance are different from working in a classroom; we all have experienced this after the pandemic. Other things are important to consider when a coach and a student sit in different locations and communicate via text."

Text: Anna Gullers