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Topic: AP
Replies: 4   Last Post: Sep 21, 2004 11:26 AM

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nstahl@uwcmail.uwc.edu

Posts: 4
Registered: 12/8/04
Re: AP
Posted: Sep 21, 2004 11:26 AM
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Jerry Uhl is right in saying when we put in new technology we need to put in
new problems.

If, for instance, we gave people a graphing calculator and allowed them to use
it to find solutions to all the equations they came across, they would learn
one easy thing (how to find where a graph crosses an axis) but are probably no
longer learning a lot of harder things (about solving various kinds of
equations) that made them think.

All that thinking they would have done in learning to solve lots of kinds of
equations needs to be replaced by some other important kind of thinking.

I'm not familiar enough with AP calculus to know whether they are guilty of
not replacing the thinking, but if they are it's a bad thing. I have seen
some texts, e.g. for college algebra, which I believe are guilty of that.

Neil Stahl

------------- Begin Original Message -------------

At 11:56 PM 1/30/96 -0600, John A Benson wrote:
.........There are many teachers who were >reluctant to use graphing
calculators until AP said they were required. >Many of those teachers have
become believers in the new technology. Many >schools ahve begun to require
graphing calculators in algebra and trig >because it is on the AP
test....................

Agreed. But when technology comes in, it is natural that new courses and new
problems come in to reflect the technology. By and large this has not
happened. In fact, the new AP calculator based questions are really no
different from the old hand questions. As a result the AP encourages the
simple expedient of just cutting technology into the old course possibly
degrading it.

The real advantage of technology is its potential to be used to get at new
ideas. None of the available calculator-based courses have progressed to this
point. -Jerry Uhl

---------------------------------------------------------------------- Jerry
Uhl juhl@ncsa.uiuc.edu Professor of
Mathematics 1409 West Green Street University of Illinois
Urbana,Illinois 61801 Calculus&Mathematica Development
Team http://www-cm.math.uiuc.edu

"Calculus, as currently taught, is full of inert material..."
----------------Peter Lax











Date Subject Author
1/31/96
Read AP
John A Benson
1/31/96
Read Re: AP
Jerry Uhl
1/31/96
Read Re: AP
Mark Howell (Gonzaga)
1/31/96
Read Re: AP
Jerry Uhl
9/21/04
Read Re: AP
nstahl@uwcmail.uwc.edu

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