id: 02354035
dt: b
an: 2004c.02222
au: Solomon, Friedberg; Avner, Ash; Brown, Elizabeth; Hughes Hallet, Deborah;
Kasman, Reva; Kenney, Margaret; Mantini, Lisa A.; McCallum, William;
Teitelbaum, Jeremy; Zia, Lee
ti: Teaching mathematics in colleges and universities: case studies for
today’s classroom. Graduate student edition.
so: CBMS Issues in Mathematics Education 10. Providence, RI: American
Mathematical Society (AMS) (ISBN 0-8218-2823-1). 67 p. (2001).
py: 2001
pu: Providence, RI: American Mathematical Society (AMS)
la: EN
cc: D44 D45 D64 D65
ut:
ci:
li:
ab: Recent history tells us that, unfortunately, the relations between
mathematicians and mathematics educators are, sometimes, uneasy. The
two groups of professionals seem strange to each other. I will return
to this point later on. It is a great satisfaction to see this book in
print. It will be specially useful to graduate students who are TAs or
will be college teachers. They face a prospective of teaching
mathematics in practically every undergraduate curriculum, from
humanities to the scientific and technical areas. In the Introduction,
Friedberg says “Just as ‘doing exercises’ is an integral part of
learning mathematics,\dots these Case Studies may be regarded as
teaching exercises, and can play a similar role in gaining teaching
expertise”. The option of this volume was to present fourteen case
studies, all “fictionalized accounts of common teaching
situations”. These sentences define the idea of the project, which
resulted in this book. Surely these teaching exercises are valuable and
the project was very carefully conducted. Several mathematicians who
are recognized by their achievements in the collegiate level have been
consulted and participated in the project. The Case Studies range from
questions about students who ask to be transferred from one course to
another and students who lack prerequisites, to questions about how to
teach the fundamental theorem of calculus and Fourier series, from
questions about managing group work to questions about evaluation and
grading. Indeed, these are questions which graduate students, TAs and
even more mature teachers face in their routine practice. This volume
is a good illustration of the different perspectives of mathematicians
who teach and of educators with a mathematical formation. Indeed, the
former are mathematicians who use the opportunity of having a number of
students whose career depends on taking the required courses, to convey
the mathematics established in the programs. The latter are educators
who see themselves possessing a specific specialty, in the case
mathematics, that can be useful in furthering a broad concept of
creativity, which are the ideals of students with varied interest,
motivation and background. The posture, hence the resulting practices,
are not the same. This book is a valuable companion to the former.
Conspicuously, the word education does not appear in the important
Introduction, which sets the purpose of the project and of the book,
while the word teaching is often repeated.
rv: Ubiratan D’Ambrosio (São Paulo)