Senior Education Researcher

Ken Rafanan

Program/Areas of Interest

  • Dynamic representation technology
  • Mathematics and 3D Design
  • Mathematical argumentation and modeling
  • Curriculum Design
  • STEM with Pre-K populations


Ken Rafanan develops learning activity systems integrating teacher professional development, curriculum, assessment, and technology designed to enhance learning of critical mathematics.

Ken’s recent work has focused on the use of 3d design and 3d printing to support the learning of spatial reasoning and computational thinking for middle school and the use of argumentation and teacher coaching in middle school classrooms. Ken has also worked on the development of tablet computers for structuring learning activities for learning early mathematics and computational thinking in preschools in the United States as well as the use of tablet computers in middle school mathematics in the United States and the United Kingdom. He currently leads the community outreach and the piloting of classroom materials for the MPACT project. He has helped develop assessments for use in preschools and elementary school, middle school and community college classrooms using an evidence centered design framework.


  • M.A., Education (Learning, Design & Technology Program), Stanford University, 2003
  • B.A., German Studies, Stanford University, 2002 (class of 1993)

Honors & Awards

  • CSCL 2009 Best Paper Award

Highlighted Publications

Vahey, P., Knudsen, J., Rafanan, K., & Lara-Meloy, T. (2013). Curricular Activity Systems Supporting the Use of Dynamic Representations to Foster Students’ Deep Understanding of Mathematics. In C. Mouza and N. Lavigne (Eds.). Emerging Technologies for the Classroom, pp. 15 – 30. Springer, NY.

Roschelle, J., Rafanan, K., Bhanot, R., Estrella, G., Penuel, W., Nussbaum, M., and Claro, S. (2010). Scaffolding group explanation and feedback with handheld technology: impact on students’ mathematics learning. Educational Technology Research & Development 58(4): 399-419.

Roschelle, J., Rafanan, K., Estrella, G., Nussbaum, M., & Claro, S. (2010). From handheld collaborative tool to effective classroom module: Embedding CSCL in a broader design framework. Computer & Education, 56(3), 1018-1026.