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Topic: Escobales on Ralston - AMS Notices, Aug 2004
Replies: 1   Last Post: Jul 19, 2004 9:16 PM

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Domenico Rosa

Posts: 455
Registered: 12/4/04
Re: Escobales on Ralston - AMS Notices, Aug 2004
Posted: Jul 19, 2004 9:16 PM
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On Fri, 16 Jul 2004 13:09:02 -0700, Wayne Bishop wrote:
>Exactly.
>
>That paper is easily available: <a

href="http://www.doc.ic.ac.uk/~ar9/abolpub.htm">http://www.doc.ic.ac.uk/~ar9/abolpub.htm

>
>Wayne.
> ----------------------------------------------------------
>
>Notices of the AMS August 2004, Vol 51, N0 7
>
>Letters to the Editor <a

href="http://www.ams.org/notices/200407/commentary.pdf">http://www.ams.org/notices/200407/commentary.pdf

>
>Paper-and-Pencil Math

[snip]

>Recently a student of mine came to my office for help in baby
>calculus. One of the problems had the expression 3(2/3). Naturally,
>I cancelled the two factors of 3 and said that the answer was 2.
>The student did not see why. So I wrote the equivalent improper
>fraction 6/3, and then it was clear to the student that the answer
>was indeed 2. This otherwise intelligent student had used
>calculators extensively since fifth grade at a very good school.
>This is an example of what I mean by ““calculator-assisted
>mathematical incompetence””.


Far from being an anecdotal item, the above is indicative of the grim
pseudo-education that has been promoted, with such extensive funding,
under the guise of "world-class education," "21st-century
mathematics," and "using technology to solve real-world problems."

I will add "calculator-assisted mathematical incompetence" to my
lexicon.

Dom Rosa





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