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Topic: Rules and Formulas - Supplied or Not?
Replies: 2   Last Post: May 29, 1995 11:54 PM

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Ed Wall

Posts: 36
Registered: 12/3/04
Re: Rules and Formulas - Supplied or Not?
Posted: May 29, 1995 11:54 PM
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>I was having a chat to a teacher of senior (ie grade 11 and grade 12)
>mathematics a few days ago, and the question of whether students should be
>given rules, identities and formulas on exams was raised. The question was
>raised in the context of trig identities and index laws, but obviously has
>wider applicability. Should we supply on the exam paper such things as
>sin^2 + cos^2 = 1, (ab)^n = a^n b^n, log(ab) = log a + log b, the chain

...... some deleted

Depends on the level, I would say, and JUST what you are trying to test (and/or
teach). In any case discussing this with a professor, he suggested that the
burden be put on the student. Rather than supply them with, allow them to
bring, for example, a card with anything written on it. He felt that students
would do a little more focused thinking in preparation.

Have tried both letting them bring almost anything but their book and just a
sheet. It perhaps helps as a psychological crutch, but not much in solving
problems. On a personal level when I used to work as an 'applied' mathematican
I definitely depended on my knowledge of where to find hints to solve
problems rather than absolute knowlege. There is just too much to know.

Another point. If I do supply 'aids', then I raise the level of 'difficulty'.

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