Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Online Journal Combines Teaching Math And Studying How Students Learn

Date:
December 14, 2006
Source:
National Science Foundation
Summary:
When instructors at Bronx-area community colleges applied for a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to study how students think about fundamental concepts of calculus, they hoped to gain a better understanding of how college students learn mathematics. During the 4-year project, the teacher-researchers integrated ongoing research theories with classroom teaching. As a result, their project has evolved into a tool for helping students reason their way through complex calculus.

An online teaching-research journal provides insight into how students think intuitively about difficult mathematics problems.
Credit: NSF

When instructors at Bronx-area community colleges applied for a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to study how students think about fundamental concepts of calculus, they hoped to gain a better understanding of how college students learn mathematics. During the 4-year project, the teacher-researchers integrated ongoing research theories with classroom teaching. As a result, their project has evolved into a tool for helping students reason their way through complex calculus.

The researchers found that when students are actively engaged in the learning process, they are more likely to sort out the logic behind mathematical problems. A give-and-take method allows the students to voice their fears about the subject, express misconceptions, and participate in open discussions to reach a solution. Using an online, peer-reviewed teaching-research journal, the teacher-researchers give updates on their progress and share best practices and procedures. They invite other mathematics teachers and instructors to document their experiences and successes.

"The journal project contributes to NSF's goal to create an online network of learning environments and resources for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education at all levels," said Lee L. Zia, program director for NSF's Division of Undergraduate Education. "Through a relatively easy mechanism to share best practices with the local community, the journal stimulates and supports research on learning, which is one of NSF's objectives."

"The biggest strength of our project is that it ensures that mathematics is accessible to all students," said Bronislaw Czarnocha, principal investigator at Hostos Community College of the City University of New York. "We focus on understanding how students think intuitively about calculus. We then design a method of instruction that develops their mathematical thinking to their maximum potential. This process offers our students, many of whom juggle families and jobs, the chance to establish fundamentals of mathematical thinking andto excel in a difficult mathematics course."

One example of an online journal entry from a teacher recommends adapting teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) strategies because both math and ESL teachers share the common challenge of teaching students to speak and write using an unfamiliar language. The journal contributor recommends this tactic when English is the math student's second language and suggests that math teachers introduce math vocabulary and definitions, then layer and repeat words and concepts until students grow familiar with them.

Another entry suggests activities to help translate research results into practice.For example, teachers might more effectively adapt their teaching style when trends show differences in how girls and boys learn.

"Our intent with the journal is to create a vibrant, supportive community," said Vrunda Prabhu, co-principal investigator, who teaches mathematics at the Bronx Community College of the City University of New York. "The journal offers teaching-research tools to deal with the complex problems of our multicultural, multilingual classrooms."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Science Foundation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Science Foundation. "Online Journal Combines Teaching Math And Studying How Students Learn." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 December 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061211124707.htm>.
National Science Foundation. (2006, December 14). Online Journal Combines Teaching Math And Studying How Students Learn. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061211124707.htm
National Science Foundation. "Online Journal Combines Teaching Math And Studying How Students Learn." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061211124707.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Heartbleed Hack Leads To Arrest

Heartbleed Hack Leads To Arrest

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A 19-year-old computer science student has been arrested in relation to a data breach of 900 social insurance numbers from Canada's revenue agency. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yahoo's Ousted COO Gets $58M Severance Package

Yahoo's Ousted COO Gets $58M Severance Package

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) According to SEC filings, Yahoo gave ousted COO Henrique de Castro a $58 million severance package. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
German Researchers Crack Samsung's Fingerprint Scanner

German Researchers Crack Samsung's Fingerprint Scanner

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) German researchers have used a fake fingerprint made from glue to bypass the fingerprint security system on Samsung's new Galaxy S5 smartphone. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Twitter, Apple Social Data Purchases Likely to Spur More Mergers and Acquisitions

Twitter, Apple Social Data Purchases Likely to Spur More Mergers and Acquisitions

TheStreet (Apr. 16, 2014) The social media data space is likely to see more mergers and acquisitions following Twitter Inc.'s acquisition of tweet analyzer Gnip Inc. on Tuesday and Apples Inc.'s purchase of Topsy Labs Inc. back in December. One firm in particular, the U.K.'s DataSift Inc., could be on the list of potential buyers. Among other social media startups that could be ripe for picking is Banjo, whose mobile app provides aggregated content by topic and location. Banjo could also be a good fit for Twitter. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins