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Bill's posting
Posted:
Jan 26, 1994 4:55 PM


> > Having said all this, let me concede that my position within > the writing team for MATH Connections is that of the > dissenting minority viewpoint. > > Bill Berlinghoff, Senior Writer, MATH Connections >
Bill makes it sound like he's an outlier. Actually, I'm not sure there is enough of a wellformed consensus among the project staff to make outlier identification possible. I agree with the sentiments expressed in Bill's posting. (I am another of the 3 senior writers on this project.) The whole idea of an axiomatic system seems to me a central notion of western thought that has had as much impact on physics and philosophy as on mathematics. For that reason, I think it is especially important for nonmathma majors to be exposed to this, probably in the realm where it first surfaced historically. On the other hand, I think many high school students may not have the mental maturity to handle an axiomatic system, and so trying to do axiomatics for an entire year almost unavoidably leads to a trivialization into rote memorization so that more than a few students can pass the course. I'm not sure how this conflict should be resolved.
_   Robert W. Hayden   Department of Mathematics /  Plymouth State College   Plymouth, New Hampshire 03264 USA  *  (603) 5362497 (until 30 December 1993) /  (603) 9689914  ) (603) 5352489 L_____/ hayden@oz.plymouth.edu



