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Bennoun, Steve; Holm, Tara – PRIMUS, 2021

The Mathematics Department at Cornell University has recently secured a grant from the University to implement systemic change in how we teach courses that reach students at critical transition points in their mathematical development. In this article, we report on the changes made to our large multi-section first-semester calculus course in order…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Teaching Methods, Educational Change, Active Learning

Turner, Dusty; Pleuss, James; Collins, Christopher – PRIMUS, 2021

In the continual pursuit of classroom learning effectiveness, researchers and educators aim to develop strategies that improve student performance and learning. One such strategy is to create academically homogeneous environments where students are grouped into classes based on their preconceived academic ability. The research team tests this…

Descriptors: Grouping (Instructional Purposes), Undergraduate Study, Ability Grouping, College Mathematics

Yao, Guangming; Black, Kelly; Ramsdell, Michael; Skufca, Joseph – PRIMUS, 2020

Improving student success rates in introductory calculus and physics courses is critically important for our students' path in STEM fields. Many of the students who have an intuitive understanding of physics fail calculus and are pushed to delay or drop their majors in technical fields. One way of addressing this issue is by adopting a program…

Descriptors: STEM Education, Undergraduate Students, Success, Mathematics Achievement

Koban, D.; Fukuzawa, M.; Slocum, R.; Fletcher, M.; Pleuss, J. – PRIMUS, 2020

We present an analysis on the differential effects of incentivizing homework in an introductory mathematics course at the United States Military Academy. We found that including homework as part of a student's overall course average (incentive) led to a significantly higher performance (achievement) on homework assignments. However, doing homework…

Descriptors: Homework, Correlation, Mathematics Achievement, Introductory Courses

Cline, Kelly; Zullo, Holly; Huckaby, David A.; Storm, Christopher; Stewart, Ann – PRIMUS, 2018

Classroom voting can be an effective way to stimulate student discussions. In this pedagogy, the instructor poses a multiple-choice question to the class, and then allows a few minutes for consideration and small-group discussion before students vote, either with clickers, cell phones, or a non-electronic method. After the vote the instructor…

Descriptors: Calculus, Mathematics Instruction, Audience Response Systems, Voting

Cushman, Jane R.; Gantner, Ryan; George, C. Yousuf; Morrow, Margaret L.; Rault, Patrick X. – PRIMUS, 2018

What began as a small group of professors gathering to discuss implementation of Inquiry-Based Learning (IBL) in our classes has developed into a strong regional community of practice. Through a generous grant and a lot of hard work, we created the Greater Upstate New York IBL consortium with a mission to create, grow, and maintain a community of…

Descriptors: College Mathematics, Inquiry, Teaching Methods, Communities of Practice

Helmreich, James E.; Krog, K. Peter – PRIMUS, 2018

We present a short, inquiry-based learning course on concepts and methods underlying ordinary least squares (OLS), least absolute deviation (LAD), and quantile regression (QR). Students investigate squared, absolute, and weighted absolute distance functions (metrics) as location measures. Using differential calculus and properties of convex…

Descriptors: Least Squares Statistics, Regression (Statistics), Active Learning, Inquiry

Camenga, Kristin A. – PRIMUS, 2017

Inquiry is promoted as a way to engage students so that they learn more deeply; inquiry is also an end in itself, introducing students to the research process and the behaviors of a mathematician. This article reflects on an individual exploratory project used in a sophomore-level number theory course, examining how it supported student inquiry…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Inquiry, Student Attitudes, Teaching Methods

Gerhardt, Ira – PRIMUS, 2017

The recent introduction of a new course in mathematical modeling at Manhattan College has provided students with a valuable opportunity to gain practical experience utilizing tools in applying their mathematical abilities to a real-world problem. This paper describes the steps taken to create this class, from obtaining a real-world partner…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Models, Teaching Methods, Relevance (Education)

Jaafar, Reem – PRIMUS, 2016

For students with little experience in mathematical thinking and conceptualization, writing-to-learn activities (WTL) can be particularly effective in promoting discovery and understanding. For community college students embarking on a first calculus course in particular, writing activities can help facilitate the transition from an "apply…

Descriptors: College Mathematics, Calculus, Mathematics Instruction, Writing Instruction

Starling, James K.; Povich, Timothy J.; Findlay, Michael – PRIMUS, 2016

We describe a modeling project designed for an ordinary differential equations (ODEs) course using first-order and systems of first-order differential equations to model the fermentation process in beer. The project aims to expose the students to the modeling process by creating and solving a mathematical model and effectively communicating their…

Descriptors: Undergraduate Study, College Mathematics, Mathematics Instruction, Equations (Mathematics)

George, C. Yousuf; Koetz, Matt; Lewis, Heather A. – PRIMUS, 2016

Three years ago our mathematics department rearranged the topics in second and third semester calculus, moving multivariable calculus to the second semester and series to the third semester. This paper describes the new arrangement of topics, and how it could be adapted to calculus curricula at different schools. It also explains the benefits we…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, College Mathematics, Calculus, Scheduling

Wright, Sarah E. – PRIMUS, 2015

This paper describes the linear algebra class I taught during Spring 2014 semester at Adelphi University. I discuss the details of how I flipped the class and incorporated elements of inquiry-based learning as well as the reasoning behind specific decisions I made. I give feedback from the students on the success of the course and provide my own…

Descriptors: College Mathematics, Mathematics Instruction, Blended Learning, Educational Technology

Anderson, Laura; Brennan, Joseph Phillip – PRIMUS, 2015

At Binghamton, Calculus 1 is taught to over 1000 students each fall in sections of about 30-40 students, with graduate student instructors teaching most sections. Despite having small classrooms instead of lecture halls, the satisfaction and performance of students has historically been poor. We had hoped to improve student success by changing how…

Descriptors: College Mathematics, Mathematics Instruction, Blended Learning, Educational Technology

Gerhardt, Ira – PRIMUS, 2015

An experiment was conducted over three recent semesters of an introductory calculus course to test whether it was possible to quantify the effect that difficulty with basic algebraic and arithmetic computation had on individual performance. Points lost during the term were classified as being due to either algebraic and arithmetic mistakes…

Descriptors: Mathematics Instruction, College Mathematics, Undergraduate Study, Calculus