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Minicourses

1. Environmental Mathematics

Part 1, Friday, August 2, 3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 24
Part 2, Saturday, August 3, 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
, Connecticut Convention Center, Room 24

The goal of the course is to provide you with the concepts, techniques and resources that will serve as the basis for a six-week module in a liberal arts course or a three-week module in an introductory modeling course. This approach to systems modeling requires little beyond high school algebra, yet it will enable students to model processes such as the flow and interaction of energy, materials, and populations. The modeling is based on an integrated visual-qualitative-computational approach. A flow equation (a D.E. in disguise) will be our key concept/technique. The first hour will be an overview, including examples; we will model systems with one tank (variable). In the second hour you will be modeling a system with two tanks. You will represent the system diagrammatically, express the diagram with flow equations, solve the equations qualitatively, and then numerically solve the equations. In the third hour, teams will model scenarios that involve non-linear interaction of flows and tanks. In the last hour, we will link economics to natural capital and sustainability, and then have an open discussion.

Ben Fusaro, Florida State University 

2. Teaching with Classroom Voting and Clickers

Part 1, Thursday, August 1, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 24
Part 2, Friday, August 2, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 24

This minicourse will provide participants with an overview of classroom voting pedagogy in a wide range of college mathematics courses. Time will be spent discussing the logistics of classroom voting using clickers as well as recent research on this type of pedagogy. Participants will play the role of students in a voting demonstration, explore an online library of over 2300 classroom voting questions, prepare a lecture with voting questions for use in one of their own courses, and try their hands at writing some questions.

Holly Zullo, Carroll College
Jean McGivney-Burelle, University of Hartford
Ann Stewart, Hood College
Christopher Storm, Adelphi University

3. Resequencing Calculus

Part 1, Thursday, August 1, 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 24
Part 2, Friday, August 2, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 25

The Resequencing Calculus project is redesigning the calculus sequence, ordering topics so that material prerequisite for upper-level STEM courses is front-loaded into the first two semesters and so that there is a natural progression of difficulty throughout the 3-course sequence. Participants will explore the proposed resequence of Calculus I-III and will have a chance to discuss the sequence with instructors who have taught the sequence. Participants will discuss the progress and assessment of the project to date, future plans, and various approaches for dealing with multiple challenges, including those posed by course transfers and AP credit. This project is supported by NSF Grants DUE 1225566 and 0836676.

Mike Axtell, University of Saint Thomas and Joe Stickles, Millikin University

4. Passion-Driven Statistics: A Supportive, Project-Based, Multidisciplinary Introductory Curriculum

Part 1, Friday, August 2, 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 25
Part 2, Saturday, August 3, 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 25

This minicourse exposes participants to a multidisciplinary, project-based model for teaching introductory statistics. We will present new learning materials and innovative teaching strategies that directly and creatively tackle many of the most significant challenges currently faced by introductory statistics instructors and students. The curriculum is aimed at taking advantage of students’ natural curiosity and providing a common language for approaching questions across numerous scientific disciplines. Core features of this curriculum include providing opportunities for students to flexibly apply their knowledge, the use of computing as a window to core statistical concepts, and supporting students with varying levels of preparation.

Jeffrey Nolan and Arielle Selya, Wesleyan University

5. Mathematical Expeditions in Polar Science

Part 1, Thursday, August 1, 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 25
Part 2, Saturday, August 3, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 25

“The challenges facing our planet and our civilization are multidisciplinary and multifaceted, and the mathematical sciences play a central role in the scientific effort to understand and to deal with these challenges.” — Mathematics of Planet Earth 2013. The polar regions are critically important to the global system. Participants will learn about many different areas of scientific research going on in the Arctic and in Antarctica, including sea ice, glaciers, ice cores, phenology, astronomy, biology, and satellite mapping. This mini-course will appeal to teachers of grades 11-14 who are looking for interesting, timely, and interdisciplinary applications which illustrate the power of mathematics in understanding our planet and its challenges. Mathematical modeling and data representation will be a unifying theme in the activities; mathematics from algebra to differential equations may be highlighted. Many excellent resources will be used during the mini-course, so please bring a laptop with wireless capability.

Lynn Foshee Reed, Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellow, NSF Polar Programs

6. Making Math Relevant: A Multidisciplinary Sustainability Module for Calculus

Part 1, Thursday, August 1, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 25
Part 2, Saturday, August 3, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m., Connecticut Convention Center, Room 24

Do you want to improve student engagement and understanding of the relevance of calculus to every-day life, without sacrificing typical content? This minicourse will bring together data, Excel, sustainability and a multidisciplinary approach to provide richer context and relevance for calculus. The module has students consider the 21st century problem: What are the current and future impacts of global climate change on polar bears? Students then use real data and Excel, write a technical report, read reports written by student in data structures, ecology, and thermodynamics, and then complete a summary assignment to bring together the information for all disciplines. This mini-course provides the background information to successfully use the module, along with data sets ideas for sustainability exercises. Participants will need Excel loaded onto their laptops and are encouraged to bring a calculator.

Thomas J. Pfaff and Jason Hamilton, Ithaca College

Year: 
2013

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