Nicholas Johnson, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

School of Teacher Education

San Diego

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Nick Johnson is an assistant professor in the School of Teacher Education at San Diego State University. His work focuses on how people learn and on how classroom interactions position students as capable knowers and doers of mathematics. He is especially interested in how teachers’ understandings of children’s mathematical thinking can open opportunities to recognize children’s strengths and broaden what counts as competence. Nick earned his PhD in Education in the division of Urban Schooling at UCLA. He is a former elementary school teacher, instructional coach, and county office coordinator, and is co-author of Young Children’s Mathematics: Cognitively Guided Instruction in Early Childhood Education.


Ph.D. in Education, University of California, Los Angeles


  • Webb, N. M., Franke, M. L., Ing, M., Johnson, N. C., & Zimmerman, J. (2020). The details matter in mathematics classroom dialogue. In N. Mercer, R. Wegerif, & L. Major (Eds.), Routledge international handbook of research on dialogic education (pp. 529-545). New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Johnson, N. C., Turrou, A. C., McMillan, B. G., Raygoza, M. C., & Franke, M. L. (2019). “Can you help me count these pennies?”: Surfacing preschoolers’ understandings of counting. Mathematical Thinking and Learning21(4), 237–264.
  • Webb, N. M., Franke, M. L., Ing, M., Turrou, A. C., Johnson, N. C., & Zimmerman, J. (2019). Teacher practices that promote productive dialogue and learning in mathematics classrooms. International Journal of Educational Research97, 176–186.
  • Johnson, N. C. & Gaxiola, N. (2018). Preschool connections. In M. L. Franke, E. Kazemi, & A. C. Turrou (Eds.), Choral counting and counting collections: Transforming the preK-5 math classroom (pp. 141–158). Portland, ME: Stenhouse. 
  • Turrou, A. C., Franke, M. L., & Johnson, N. C. (2017). Choral counting. Teaching Children Mathematics, (24)2, 129–135.
  • Carpenter, T. P., Franke, M. L., Johnson, N. C., Turrou, A. C., & Wager, A. A. (2017). Young children’s mathematics: Cognitively guided instruction in early childhood education. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.