
Re: Continuing Education for Math Teachers (gnu math)
Posted:
Sep 27, 2011 10:31 PM


Salvation is upon us. Yet again.
Wayne
At 03:12 PM 9/27/2011, Scott Gray wrote: > > Kirby Urner Posted: Sep 26, 2011 5:02 PM > > > > Jerry Uhl was one such person, and my respect for > > for him is boundless. But, did he change the nature > > of the calculus curriculum in any large and important > > way? I am guessing "no", for two reasons. > > > > First, had Uhl succeeded, I think we would have > > ave heard a lot more about him and his program. > > Second, there is the basic question of what is > > s fundamentally wrong with the calculus curriculum. > > >I'd like to address this thought, since it hits home and misses many >of the issues involved in trying to reform a dinosaur with the >massive inertia that Mathematics Education has. > >As far as I know, The Calculus&Mathematica project is the lone >remaining project from the NSF Calculus reform movement in the late >80s and early 90s. It is still being taught at the university of >Illinois both on campus and off through Netmath. It has been >extremely successful there, and qualitative studies have shown solid >results in the carry over skills that students carry over to their >other studies such as engineering. > >The reason it hasn't spread to other institutions has nothing to do >with it's effectiveness. It has to do with the difficulty and cost >of adoption which thus far has been too much of a barrier for the >system to go much beyond the walls of Algeld Hall at the University >of Illinois. > >The system as it stands currently has many points of friction. >First, in order to adopt this system, a professor or department has >to get Mathematica in the hands of students and teachers, then they >must put together a learning management system to handle handin and >handback. But even beyond the support and cost upfront, now an >instructor must manage 40 to 50 mathematica notebooks everytime a >homework is due. All of this is simply too much to ask. > >My team and I are doing something about this. This January we are >launching "Making Math" which takes the materials produced by Jerry >Uhl and company and repackages them into a distributed online system >that includes a high fidelity online version of mathematica, web >based learning management tools, mathematica enabled forums, and >gives instructors the ability to edit and add content. > >Now suddenly with the friction points gone and added features the >materials that Jerry Uhl produced will be readily adoptable by >anyone with a web browser. > >Keep an eye on this one! > >Scott

