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ERIC Number: EJ940207
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 8
ISSN: ISSN-1051-1970
Paintbrush of Discovery: Using Java Applets to Enhance Mathematics Education
Eason, Ray; Heath, Garrett
PRIMUS, v14 n1 p79-95 2004
This article addresses the enhancement of the learning environment by using Java applets in the mathematics classroom. Currently, the first year mathematics program at the United States Military Academy involves one semester of modeling with discrete dynamical systems (DDS). Several faculty members from the Academy have integrated Java applets into the mathematics classroom to introduce new DDS concepts. In past years, we learned from student feedback that the initial presentation of these concepts is difficult to comprehend. Instead of digesting the concept of numerical and graphical solutions to DDS's, students struggle with new notation and confusing terminology found in the textbook. In order to overcome this barrier, Java applets help immensely in the first introduction of solution methods for DDS's. Students have the chance to "see" how the graphical solution is related to the original system, and what happens to the solution as the original parameters of the model change. Among the main ideas that we want students to take away from the course are the notions of long-term behavior and system stability of problems that involve discrete time. The study of DDS's and long-term behavior and system stability has applications in modeling population growth and decay, drug dosage, finance, and many other areas. We present two Java applets and discuss how they can be used to enhance learning. (Contains 5 figures.)
Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A