The 13th INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MATHEMATICAL CREATIVITY AND GIFTEDNESS (MCG) – will be held at the Central University of Technology – Free State SOUTH AFRICA from 20 to 23 February 2024. The conference will be hosted in the Faculty of Humanities by the Department of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education. The theme of the conference is “Mathematical Creativity and Giftedness in Diverse Educational Settings” The conference will include an exciting line-up of keynote speakers aimed at promoting mathematical creativity and giftedness in students of all ages and backgrounds, and supporting interested mathematics educators, mathematicians, researchers, teachers and other practitioners. Proposed conference topics include presentation of research and suggestions for practice that allow for fruitful debates and opportunities for interaction among professionals at all levels with interdisciplinary interests.


Specifically, this includes:

Welcoming Speaker 

Professor Pamela Dube - Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the Central University of Technology:


Prof. Dube is an accomplished international leader in academia, having attained numerous qualifications from various national and international universities. She is also the first woman to hold the position of Vice-Chancellor and Principal at CUT and the first female Vice-Chancellor in the Free State.


Before joining CUT, Professor Dube held the executive leadership role of Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Student Development and Support at the University of Western Cape (UWC), where she was responsible for a transformative student experience, student well-being and academic success. She has had a versatile career stretching from lecturer and researcher at the University of Siegen in Germany, lecturer at the University of KwaZulu Natal, Pietermaritzburg, guest lecturer at Kathmandu university in Nepal, Dean of Student Affairs at the University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) to Director and Acting Chief Director at the National Department of Education, and Head of Human Resources Development and International Relations at the South African Nuclear Energy Cooperation. She was also the Special Advisor to the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Johannesburg (UJ).

Keynote Speakers

Abdon Atangana

Abdon Atangana works at the Institute for Groundwater Studies, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa as a Full Professor. His research interests are, but are not limited to, fractional calculus and applications, numerical and analytical methods, and modeling. He is the author of more than 370 research papers and 9 books. He is the founder of numerous mathematical operators, for example, fractional differential and integral operators with singular and nonlocal kernels (Atangana-Baleanu derivatives and integral), fractal-fractional calculus, and piecewise calculus, and some numerical methods. He serves as an editor in top-tier journals in various fields of study. He has been invited as a plenary, and keynote speaker at more than 30 international conferences. He was elected Highly Cited Mathematician in 2019, Highly Cited Mathematician with Crossfield Impact in 2020, and Highly Cited Mathematician in 2021. He is a recipient of the Obada price 2020, the TWAS-Hamdan Award 2020, and many others. He is a fellow of the World Academia of Science and the Chair of  African Mathematical Union commission for Research and Innovation.

Nonlocal Operators with Their Applications to Nature


One of the most important goals of humans is to govern the environment in which they live. Several critical measures must be taken to accomplish this. The first phase is observation, which includes data gathering; the second step is data analysis to determine which law they follow. Finally, the observed facts are converted into mathematical models. In this session, we will show how to use the recently introduced nonlocal differential and integral operators.

Dirk Wessels

Dirk Wessels was born in the Free State in 1946 and matriculated at the Hoërskool Excelsior in 1963. He completed his  BSc and MEd in Mathematics Education at UOFS and later his DEd at Unisa.  He taught Mathematics and Physical Science to senior learners at Paul Erasmus Hoërskool (Senekal), Hoërskool Trompsburg and  Hoërskool Wolmaransstad. From 1980 he taught at the College of Education for Further Training (CEFT) in Pretoria and from Nov 1983 as Senior Lecturer at Unisa in the Dept of Didactics. He was responsible for Didactics and Subject Didactics of Mathematics (Mathematics Education) which he taught for 25 years. He completed his DEd in 1989 and became Associate Professor in 1996 and full professor in 2006. He retired from Unisa in January 2009 and moved to Strand in the Western Cape. He was appointed as Associate-Professor Extraordinaire in Mathematics Education in the Dept of Curriculum Studies at the University of Stellenbosch from 1 June 2009. He supervised 17 master and 12 doctorate students successfully and is now involved with eight post graduate students. He published a number of school mathematics textbooks, articles (on his own and also with other academics). He has three children and is married to dr Helena Wessels who is a lecturer in Foundation Phase Mathematics Education at the Stellenbosch University.  

The Art of Mathematical Modelling: Unleashing Creativity


In the 21st century, creativity and problem-solving are essential for global and personal success, contributing to economic prosperity and reducing inequalities. Mathematical creativity involves fluency, flexibility, and originality, emphasizing unique and insightful solutions. Mathematical modeling aligns with international curricula, requiring learners to address real-world problems, fostering creative mathematical talent. Model-eliciting tasks (MEAs) are open, non-routine problems that encourage self-invented strategies, promoting intuition, creativity, and divergent thinking. MEAs, facilitating fluency and flexibility, serve as an ideal tool for developing mathematical creativity, catering to a broader range of abilities beyond traditional textbooks and tests, making mathematics education more inclusive and practical.

Kobus Maree

Jacobus Gideon Maree is an educational psychologist and a professor in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Pretoria. He holds doctoral degrees in Education (Career Counselling), Mathematics Education, and Psychology. He has received multiple awards and has a B1 rating from the National Research Foundation. A fellow of PsySSA and the IAAP and a member of the Board of Directors of the IAAP (Division 16), he is the sole African representative on the UNESCO Chair on Lifelong Guidance and Counseling and the UNESCO University Network and Twinning Chair. He has authored or co­authored 50+ peer­reviewed articles and 22+ books/ book chapters on career counselling, research, and related topics since 2016. In the same period, he supervised 17 doctoral theses and Master’s dissertations. He read keynote papers at 20 international conferences and accepted honorary scholarly appointments as a research fellow, professor extraordinaire, adjunct professor, and visiting professor at several universities worldwide.

Career Construction Counselling to Enhance Mathematical Creativity and Giftedness in Diverse Educational Settings


The keynote, inspired by Rossi and Olson, unveils a personal narrative to illuminate the plight of mathematically creative students globally. Part I underscores the neglect of these students in constructing career-life identities, advocating for the integration of test scores with personal stories by career psychologists. Part II delves into research questions, the conflict, and the presenter's uncertainties, exploring how eliciting and integrating students' stories and scores can clarify career-life identity. Part III introduces an integrative qualitative+quantitative approach for career counseling, emphasizing self-advising, listening to student stories, and conscious self-integration. The ultimate goal is to empower mathematically gifted students to transform challenges into hope and contribute meaningfully to society, echoing Reuven Bar-On's concern about lost potential. The presenter is eager to contribute to global efforts for these students' empowerment.

Linda Sheffield

Linda Jensen Sheffield, Ph. D., Regents Professor Emerita of Mathematics and Gifted Education, was the founding vice president of the International Group for Mathematical Creativity and Giftedness (MCG). She was a leader of the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) STEM Network, the International Congress on Mathematical Education (ICME) Topic Study Group on Gifted Students, the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM) Special Interest Group on Mathematically Promising, was chair of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Task Force on Promising Students and is past president of the School Science and Mathematics Association (SSMA). She has authored or co-authored over 100 books and articles, including the Javits-funded Project M^3: Mentoring Mathematical Minds, the NSF Project M^2: Mentoring Young Mathematicians, Project A^3: Awesome Advanced Activities, and Math Innovations units for elementary and middle school students as well as the NAGC/NCTM/NCSM monograph, Using the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics with Gifted and Advanced Learners; The Peak in the Middle: Developing Mathematically Gifted Students in the Middle Grades; Extending the Challenge in Mathematics; Awesome Math Problems for Creative Thinking; the PreK–2 NCTM Navigations series; and math methods books for early childhood, elementary, and middle school teachers. She directed numerous USA state and national grants and has conducted seminars around the world with an emphasis on helping all students develop their mathematical creativity, promise, and abilities to the fullest extent possible.

Developing Mathematical Creativity and Giftedness: Tips from Fifty Years of Research and Practice


We want all students to enjoy, innovate, reason, question, communicate, collaborate, and make sense of mathematics, building a solid foundation and setting the course for the highest levels in the future. This is critical for society in general as well as for the students themselves. We must ensure that high-performing students continue to progress, building enthusiasm, skills, and creativity and make sure that more students advance along that path. Building on over fifty years of practice and research, this session will include tips for policymakers, educators, researchers, families and students themselves.

William Speer

Dr. Speer is the Emeritus Director of the Mathematics Learning Center at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He also served as the Dean of the UNLV College of Education and is an Emeritus Professor of Mathematics Education at UNLV, He was previously awarded an Emeritus Professorship at Bowling Green State University and is a founder of the COSci/COEdu/COEng Center for Science, Mathematics and Engineering Education.

He has served the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics as a member of the Board of Directors of the Mathematics Education Trust and as a principal author of the NCTM’s Professional Standards for Teaching Mathematics. In 2018, he was honored by the Council as the recipient of its coveted Lifetime Achievement Award. He has been the President of the state mathematics organizations in both Ohio and Nevada as well as President of the national/international School Science and Mathematics Association. He is a founding member, and former President, of the Research Council on Mathematics Learning, which is currently celebrating its 50-year anniversary. Dr. Speer has also been the recipient of two Fulbright Awards (to The Bahamas and England) and a USAID appointment (to Malawi). 

Speer received a BS and MSEd in mathematics from Northern Illinois University and a PhD from Kent State University, under the mentorship of James W. Heddens. Dr. Speer has spent 50 years at primarily two institutions, BGSU and UNLV. Although he has devoted his attention and loyalty to the needs and demands of his students, he has been able to lecture extensively throughout the 50 United States, as well as an invited speaker and consultant in 44 countries on six continents. Perhaps most importantly, he has amassed classroom experience at each level of PreK-20 and enjoys sharing and learning about how research informs us and how the classroom lends itself to valuable generative students of mathematics teaching and learning. 

Principles for Teaching Mathematics Creatively to Promote Creativity in Diverse Settings 

We can't be motivators of creativity if we don't display ourselves as creative. In this research-based, practice-oriented session we will examine mathematics in ways that challenge our initial thoughts and devise creative ways to construct and take ownership of "new" knowledge. It is through this transfer of existing knowledge, which we often don't realize we possess, to apparently new, but often related, situations and circumstances, that defines true understanding.


Central University of Technology, Free State or CUT is a University of Technology in Bloemfontein which is the capital city of the Free State province of South Africa. It was established in 1981 as “Technikon Free State”. As part of South African governments’ restructuring of tertiary education for the new millennium it was promoted to a university of technology status.


The university has two campuses – one in Bloemfontein, the judicial capital of South Africa, and one in Welkom, in the heart of the Free State goldfields. The two campuses offer education opportunities in several technological fields, including science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The qualifications on offer reside in four faculties, namely Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences; Faculty of Humanities; Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment, and Information Technology (FEBEIT); and Faculty of Management Sciences. The Central University of Technology employs over 800 academic and research staff spread across the four faculties. Today, the institution boasts more than 21 000 students who have decided to make CUT their academic partner in earning a qualification and gaining appropriate work-integrated learning to equip and prepare them for professional practice.


As a congress venue, The Central University of Technology has state of the art conference rooms. In terms of experience, the university has hosted several International Conferences. The CUT Hotel School will be the venue for the conference. It was built in 1912 and currently the renowned CUT Hotel School operates from it training students for the hospitality industry worldwide. On the 21st of February 2024 the conference will kick off with a gala dinner held in the Atrium of the Hotel School and the delegates will be dined by our own students studying at the Hotel School. From the 21st of February to the 23rd of February 2024 all session will be presented in the 112-year-old building with state-of-the-art facilities.


A shuttle service will run between the hotels and the University Campus for the duration of the conference.

City Lodge Bloemfontein:

The 151-room City Lodge Hotel Bloemfontein is as scenic as it is comfortable, featuring a sparkling swimming pool set in landscaped gardens.It is located within walking distance of the Bloemfontein Mediclinic, zoo, stadium, university, Supreme Court, several schools and a wide variety of restaurants and retailers.The hotel features uncapped WiFi; a ten-seater boardroom; fitness room; #Café restaurant and sundowner bar.

Hotel promotion code:  IGMCG2024

Direct link:



Registration Note:


What is included in the registration fee?

·      Publication in the conference proceedings if requested.

·      Admission to all oral sessions (parallel sessions with audio-visual equipment, computers, projectors, screens, microphones, Wi-Fi connection, etc.)

·      Admission to poster sessions.

·      Attendance to professional development sessions, workshops and interactive sessions.

·      Networking opportunities.

·      Wi-Fi connection at the venue.

·      A printed Conference Programme.

·      Online access to the Conference Proceedings (with an ISBN number).

·      Conference bag.

·      Conference material (conference information package, conference gift, etc…)

·      5 Snacks/Coffee breaks (daily: morning and afternoon)

·      2 Conference buffet lunches (Wednesday and Thursday)

·      Take away lunch on Friday.

·      Attendance at the Gala evening on Wednesday evening 

·      Attendance and/or Author certificates.

·      Special rates for accommodation at the venue hotel.

·      An invoice of the registration fee will be provided along with the conference material.

·      A city tour of Bloemfontein to see all the historical sites and the only nature reserve in the middle of a city in the world.

Registration Payment Options

You have two options for making your payment:


Online Payment Facility

You can conveniently make your payment online through our secure payment gateway. 

Please follow this link to access the online payment facility:


Bank Transfer

Alternatively, you can opt for the traditional bank transfer method. Below are the bank details for your reference:


Bank Name:                   First National Bank, a division of FirstRand Bank Limited (“FNB”)


Account Number:        62538533531


Reference:                     07585057 SURNAME


Please email the proof of payment to


Please note that the Early Bird payment option will only be available until the 22nd of October 2023. We encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity to benefit from the reduced registration fee.

Call for Proposals

Important Dates


Gregg Alexander is an associate professor in the Department of Postgraduate Studies in Education, Central University of Technology. He holds a PhD in Psychology of Education. Gregg has over 31 years of teaching experience and research engagements at various levels of the education system in the Northern Cape and Free State provinces. He started his career as a teacher in the Northern Cape province, where he also served as a subject advisor for Geography.  Gregg’s research interests are in the areas of Critical Multicultural Education, Diverse Learning Environments and Inclusive Education.  He has published numerous research papers and presented papers in various countries. 

Dr B. Fredericks is the Head of the Department of the Communication Sciences department and the chairperson of the University language Committee. His area of specialization is language but also has a keen interest in Academic Literacy and Communication Studies. He is a member of the editorial team of a journal specializing in language research and he has several published articles in accredited journals.    

Mr Johannes Andreas Gerhardus (Gerhard) Beukes joined the Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT) as a lecturer of Mechanical Technology in the Faculty of Humanities on 1 October 2009. Before joining CUT, Mr Beukes was working at G4S Mangaung Correctional Centre as the Head of Inmate Development 2000 until 2008.  Before that he was a teacher working for the Department of Basic Education (1996-2000). Mr Beukes also qualified as a Fitter and Turner while working on the Gold Fields of Welkom in South Africa in 1986. Mr Beukes holds a Master’s degree in Education from the Central University of Technology, Free State.

Professor Michael Kainose Mhlolo holds a PhD in Mathematics Education from the University of the Witwatersrand. He is an NRF rated and Full Professor of Mathematics Education. He has worked on 2 South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI) for Mathematics at the University of the Witwatersrand and Rhodes University respectively. He is currently a member of many professional bodies including the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children [WCGTC], International Commission of Mathematics Education [ICME], Mathematical Creativity & Giftedness [MCG] as well as the International Society for Intelligence Research. Prof Mhlolo was trained internationally by DAAD on how to write successful proposals for funding and has been successful in doing so. His research interests are in the Education of the Mathematically Gifted Learners. The interest to research mathematical giftedness is driven by a global discourse that positions mathematical competence as the key to the welfare of a nation in a 21st century economy. Mathematically gifted students have been hailed as the hope for the future because of their potential to generate the knowledge and skills that are needed in the 21st century.  

Dr. Motalenyane Alfred Modise is a Senior Lecturer at Central University of Technology (CUT) in Free State Province.  He is currently the Assistant Dean:  Research, Innovation and Engagement.  former Departmental Manager, former Acting Assistant Dean: Teaching and Learning and currently Assistant Dean: Research, Innovation and Engagement at CUT, Free State Province. His research interests include Accounting, transformation and change, pre-service teachers’ development, pedagogical content knowledge, HIV/AIDS and education in rural areas. He is a member of several committees at CUT.  He is the member of the following committees: Member of Senate, Title Registration Committee, Faculty research committee, HIV/AIDS Committee, Faculty board member, University Research & Innovation URIC), Research Forum, Ethical Committee member  at CUT.  He has proven himself as a scholar by presenting papers in the at national and international conferences, publishing papers in different journals and also supervise masters and PhD students. He received funding for different project from different stakeholders. Published articles in different Journals and the same time a promoter of Masters and PhD students.