Skip top navigation
College of Education and Human Development - George Mason University

Dr. Courtney K. Baker
PhD, George Mason University
Associate Professor
Academic Program Coordinator, Mathematics Specialist Leadership
Center Director, Mathematics Education Center

Contact Information

Send email to Dr. Baker

Phone: (703) 993-5081
Fax: (703) 993-2013
Email: cbaker (

George Mason University
Fairfax Campus
Thompson Hall 2400A
4400 University Dr.
MS 1E8
Fairfax, VA 22030


Dr. Courtney Baker has been an educator and advocate for public education for nearly 20 years. Prior to academia, she worked as an elementary educator, mathematics coach, and professional learning facilitator at both the school and district levels. As an Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at George Mason University, Baker continues to share her passion for the teaching and learning of mathematics. In addition to serving as the Mathematics Education Leadership Academic Program Coordinator and the Director of the Mason Mathematics Education Center, she teaches graduate mathematics education courses for in-service teachers. Her research is centered on advancing the role of mathematics specialists and developing effective mathematics leaders that help deconstruct systemic barriers and inequities. Her recent book (co-authored with Dr. Melinda Knapp from University of Oregon-Cascades), Proactive Mathematics Coaching: Bridging Content, Context, and Practice, was published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in August 2023. This book focuses on the Proactive Coaching Framework - a four-phase protocol that merges high-leverage teaching and coaching practices and supports intentional planning of coaching interactions.

Research Interests

Dr. Baker’s research agenda is centered in mathematics education and teacher development. Her specific research interests are:

  • Development of mathematics specialists, coaches, and teacher leaders
  • Self-study methodology
  • Synchronous online teaching; specializing in leadership
  • Design-based implementation research w/ district partnerships
  • Model-eliciting activities
  • STEM integration and problem-based learning
Recent Publications

* Indicates graduate student; # indicates K-12 school partner

Peer-Reviewed Books

Baker, C. & Knapp, M. (2023). Proactive Mathematics Coaching: Bridging Content, Context, and Practice. National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Peer-Reviewed Research Articles

Baker, C. K. & Edwards, K.* (2023). Embedding photovoice to transform a mathematics specialist course assignment: A self-study on developing mathematics teacher educator anti-racist pedagogical praxis. Philosophy of Mathematics Education Journal, 40, 1-23.

Baker, C. K., Hjalmarson, M. A., & Fennell, F. (2022). Mathematics specialists as school-based leaders: Adapting responsibilities to address shifts in teaching and learning. Investigations in Mathematics Learning, 1-21.

Baker, C. K., Galanti, T. M.*, Kraft, T.*, Holincheck, N., Hjalmarson, M. A., & Nelson, J. (2022). Researchers as coaches: Developing mathematics teaching capacity using MEAs for STEM integration. Investigations in Mathematics Learning, 1-21.

Baker, C. K., Saclarides, E. S., Harbour, K., Hjalmarson, M., Livers, S., & Edwards, K. C.* (2021). Trends in mathematics specialist literature: Analyzing research spanning four decades. School Science and Mathematics.

Baker, C. K. & Bitto, L. E. (2021b). Interrogating the tensions of becoming antiracist mathematics teacher educators via critical friendship and rehearsals. Studying Teacher Education, 1-18.

Baker, C. K. (2021). Learning to design effective professional development: The influence of integrating a coaching tool with an elementary mathematics specialist course assignment. Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education.

Baker, C. K., Jamieson, S.#, Paul, A.*, Kibler, S.*, Eaglen, A.*, & Kraft, T*. (2021). Developing equity-centered leadership knowledge and skills via lesson study in an online mathematics specialist program. Journal of Mathematics and Science: Collaborative Explorations, 17(1), 45–52.

Baker, C. K., Ellington, A., & Haver., W. (2021). Mathematics teacher leadership preparation, mentorship, and service: Communities of practice through online modalities. Journal of Mathematics and Science: Collaborative Explorations, 17(1), 1–9.

Galanti, T. M.*, Baker, C. K., Morrow-Leong, K., & Kraft, T.* (2021). Enriching TPACK in mathematics education: Using digital interactive notebooks in synchronous online learning environments. Interactive Technology and Smart Education, 18 (3), 345-361.

Baker, C. K. & Bitto, L. E. (2021a). Fostering a critical friendship between a program coordinator and an online adjunct to achieve reciprocal mentoring. Studying Teacher Education, 17(2), 188–207.

Bolyard, J. J. & Baker, C. K. (2021). Examining the practice of elementary mathematics specialists through narratives: Implications for professional learning and development. Professional Development in Education.

Hjalmarson, M. A. & Baker, C. K. (2020). Mathematics specialists as the hidden players in professional development: Researchable questions and methodological considerations. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 18(1), 51–66.

Baker, C. & Knapp, M. (2019). The decision-making protocol for mathematics coaching: Addressing the complexity of coaching with intentionality and reflection. Mathematics Teacher Educator, 7(2), 27–43.

Baker, C. & Hjalmarson, M. (2019). Designing purposeful interactions to advance synchronous learning experiences. International Journal of Web-based Learning and Teaching Technologies, 14(1), 1–16.

Baker, C. K., Galanti, T. M.*, Graham, J.#, Hayden, K.*, & Bailey, P. (2018). From book club to professional learning community: Empowering a network of mathematics specialists. School-University Partnerships, 11(4), 48–63.

Baker, C. K. & Galanti, T. M.* (2017). Integrating STEM in K-8 classrooms using model-eliciting activities: Responsive professional development for mathematics teacher leaders. International Journal of STEM Education, 4(10).