Thursday, July 16

Where Mathematics Education Must Go and How It Can Get There

8:15 AM-9:00 AM
Chair: Bart Ng, Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis
Room: Convocation Hall

The state of undergraduate mathematics education is at an all-time low. There is less student interest in the mathematics major than ever and former "client departments" have begun to teach more and more courses we would recognize as mathematics courses. In fact, D.J. Lewis of MPS at NSF has warned that unless undergraduate mathematics changes its ways, mathematics will go the way of classics departments.

The speaker will argue that the reason for this is a forty year ice age of stagnation of undergraduate mathematics courses. He will argue that mathematics education can be reinvigorated through heavy use of computers for visualization, experimentation and numerical methods. The result: The mathematics we teach will become like the mathematics we do, and students will be interested for the same reasons we are interested.

He will demonstrate these ideas with samples of new computer-based courses in calculus, differential equations and matrix theory in service at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in campus and distance education.

J. Jerry Uhl
Department of Mathematics
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

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MMD Created: 4/6/98 Updated: 4/7/98