Reviews of IMP: Interactive Mathematics Program

Basic Information and Introduction

Interactive Mathematics Program (IMP) is a High School mathematics curriculum developed since 1989 and designed to exemplify the NCTM Standards. The Co-Directors of the IMP Program are Lynne Alper, Sherry Fraser, Dan Fendel, and Diane Resek. The IMP web site is The program is marketed by Key Curriculum Press, and the publisher offers a product page.

According to the description at MathIMP.Org: "The IMP curriculum integrates traditional material with additional topics recommended by the NCTM Standards, such as statistics, probability, curve fitting, and matrix algebra. IMP units are generally structured around a complex central problem. Although each unit has a specific mathematical focus, other topics are brought in as needed to solve the central problem, rather than narrowly restricting the mathematical content. Ideas that are developed in one unit are usually revisited and deepened in one or more later units."

Critical Reviews and Commentary

Many of the reviews listed here were done by people in association with Mathematically Correct and are also found on the MC curriculum reviews Web page.

Literature Review of the Interactive Math Program, by Douglas A. Riepe (July 12, 2002; PDF format). A memorandum to the Cheney, KS, USD-268 Board of Education regarding IMP. Among the author's conclusions: (1) The U.S. Department of Education expert panel that granted the "exemplary" rating to IMP and other programs had the appearance of conflict of interest as well as other issues, and the rating is of little value; and (2) the IMP program is designed to retain the attention of students who will either not attend college or will major in non math fields. It lacks the depth of study for students who will study math in college and it is not a college preparatory mathematics curriculum.

Standards-Based School Mathematics Curricula, by Wayne Bishop. A book review, paying special attention to the research claims in support of the IMP program.

Review of the Interactive Mathematics Program (IMP), by H. Wu (1992, revised 1997).

An Overview of IMP Years 1 and 2, by Kim Mackey (1999?). The author is a teacher.

IMP: A Student's View, with Comments by Kim Mackey (1999?).

Integrated Mathematics in LAUSD, by Paul Clopton (1999?). The author was a member of the LAUSD Mathematics Curriculum Committee.

A Preliminary Analysis of SAT-I Mathematics Data for IMP Schools in California, by James Milgram (October, 1999).

Interactive Mathematics Program. A Manifesto on an Experimental Concept Gone Awry, by Shoumen Datta (1999?).

Open Letter to Richard Riley. IMP was one of the programs designated "Exemplary" by the United States Department of Education in 1999. The designation of this and several other "fuzzy math" programs as Promising or Exemplary gave rise to this open letter that was endorsed by over 200 professional mathematicians and scientists.

Harvard Calculus and IMP: reply to Kasman and Fendel, by David Klein (Letters, AMS Notices, Sep 1997). The Kasman and Fendel letters appeared in June 1997 (all PDF format).

This page is part of a collection of links to reviews of and commentaries on K-12 mathematics curricula and standards that is maintained by Bas Braams, Elizabeth Carson, and NYC HOLD. This ring of pages includes: TERC Investigations - Everyday Mathematics - Connected Mathematics Project (CMP) - Concepts and Skills - Structure and Method - College Preparatory Mathematics (CPM) - Interactive Mathematics Program (IMP) - Mathematics, Modelling our World (MMOW) - CPMP Contemporary Mathematics in Context - Saxon Math - NCTM Standards