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Thomas J. Pfaff
Department of Mathematics
Ithaca College

Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Mesa Laboratory, Chapman Room
Lecture 1:30 pm

Building a Bridge Between Classroom Math and Real Math

The purpose of this talk is to lay the foundation for collaborative work with NCAR staff to improve the examples, problems, and exercises used in mathematics classrooms. Most textbooks written for the math classroom are written by mathematicians interested in theory. Further, those teaching these classes are typically more interested in theory. On the other hand, most students taking introductory mathematics classes (calculus and statistics) are more engaged by real applications.
In this talk I will provide examples of what I've done in the classroom as well as an initial framework of how we might work together. The examples I will provide are related to sustainability issues and include the results of assessment to show that student benefit from this approach.