This is the summary of a presentation given at the Joint Mathematics
Meetings, January 10-13, 1996, Orlando, Florida.
Where There is a Strong Will, There is a Way
The Mathematics Department at Cal Poly Pomona consists almost entirely of
tenured full professors, comfortable with their teaching styles and suspicious
of new ideas described in jargon unfamiliar to them. An instructor who believes
in reform could become pessimistic in this atmosphere.
However, the strong desire for change by a small number of faculty within the
department has resulted in a four year project to modify calculus instruction
through the integration of alternative teaching and learning methods. The
experience has shown that it is beneficial to allow faculty to begin working
on new methods before working on curriculum goals and objectives. Support,
as well as disapproval, of the project, currently in its second year, has led
to long-avoided discussions of many facts of the existing calculus program
(content, technology, assessment, etc). A top-down style examination of the
mathematics curriculum is now conceivable.
Claudia L. Pinter-Lucke, California State Polytech University, Pomona