Minicourses are open only to persons who register for
the Joint Meetings and pay the Joint Meetings Registration
fee in addition to the appropriate minicourse fee. The
MAA reserves the right to cancel any minicourse that is
undersubscribed.
Minicourse #1: Designing
and Evaluating Assessments for Introductory Statistics,
organized by Beth L. Chance and Allan J. Rossman,
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo;
and Robert C. Del Mas, University of Minnesota;
Part A: Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; Part B: Friday,
9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Statistics teachers find it challenging
to construct student assessments that focus on conceptual
understanding, allow consistent scoring, and provide informative
feedback. Participants will be involved in constructing
assessment instruments for use in introductory courses
using an online assessment resource, ARTIST, and in evaluating
the results. We will discuss guidelines of effective assessment,
resources for assessment material categorized by concept
and level of difficulty, suggestions for evaluating student
performance through examinations and performance assessments,
and use of a comprehensive firstcourse exam. Participants
will be invited to pilot items, contribute new items,
and share outcome data for comparison across institutions
through ARTIST. Cost is $90; enrollment limit is 30.
Minicourse #2: HandsOn Discrete
Math with Technology, organized by Douglas E. Ensley
and Kate McGiveny, Shippensburg University; Part
A: Wednesday, 2:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.; Part B: Friday,
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Discrete math is a course that
serves students studying math and computer science. The
goals for these two disciplines can be different, so the
goals for this course are often debated. This minicourse
will focus on three particular topicssets/relations,
combinatorics/probability, and writing mathematical proofsthat
are common to most discrete math courses. We will use
Maple and the TI83 for the first two topics and simple
Flash movies for the third. Some familiarity with Maple
syntax and TI calculators is required, but no experience
with Flash will be assumed. Cost is $90; enrollment limit
is 30.
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Minicourse #3: Computation
and Discovery in the Number Theory Classroom, organized
by Clifford A. Reiter, Lafayette College; Part
A: Wednesday, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Part B: Friday,
3:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. While proofs remain central to
number theory, technology offers opportunities for discovering
theorems and investigating conjectures in the number theory
classroom. The instructor has developed several Jbased
computer classroom laboratories which will be shared with
participants. No experience with J is expected. Sample
lab topics include the sieve of Eratosthenes and twin
primes, discovering quadratic reciprocity, public key
codes, factoring, and elliptic curves. Participants are
expected to share their ideas, reactions, and experiences.
Cost is $90; enrollment limit is 30.
Minicourse #4: Java Applets
in Teaching Mathematics, organized by Joe Yanik,
Emporia State University, and David M. Strong,
Pepperdine University; Part A: Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to
10:00 a.m.; Part B: Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
This minicourse will introduce the participants to the
Java programming language and its use in creating mathematical
activities. No previous experience in Java programming
will be assumed. Through the use of a Visual Development
Environment and a MathToolkit that was developed with
the support of an NSF grant, this handson workshop will
lead the participants through the creation of some sample
applets and introduce them to the MathToolkit. In addition,
they will be provided with a more complete tutorial that
they can take home that will teach them the Java programming
language and its use in creating mathematical applets.
Cost is $90; enrollment limit is 30.
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Minicourse #5: Visual Linear
Algebra, organized by Eugene A. Herman, Grinnell
College; Michael D. Pepe, Seattle Central Community
College; and Eric P. Schulz, Walla Walla Community
College, Part A: Thursday, 10:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.; Part
B: Saturday, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. This minicourse will
introduce participants to a new, visual approach to teaching
linear algebra. The primary objective is to create a dynamic
learning environment in which students are actively engaged
in learning the central concepts of linear algebra. Course
materials cover the entire first course in linear algebra;
they stress the development of visualization skills to
acquire strong geometric intuition. Participants will
have the option of working with the materials in Maple,
Mathematica, or webMathematica. Cost is $90; enrollment
limit is 30. N.B. Those interested must register in advance;
there is no onsite registration for this minicourse.
Minicourse #6: Using Interactive
Labs to Explore Abstract Algebra Topics, organized
by Allen C. Hibbard, Central College, and Kenneth
M. Levasseur, University of Massachusetts at Lowell;
Part A: Thursday, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.; Part B: Saturday,
3:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. Using Mathematica, participants
will become engaged in examining interactive laboratory
activities focusing on groups, rings, and morphisms. The
notebooks, designed for exploration and investigation
of these structures, are intended to expand upon or motivate
classroom discussions. No programming with Mathematica
is necessary (though minimal familiarity with the software
is helpful) since packages are imported that define the
required functionality. A CD with our packages and notes
will be distributed. (On Thursday, 12:30 p.m. to 1:15
p.m., there will be a preliminary session available to
acquaint those unfamiliar with Mathematica.) Go to http://www.central.edu/eaam/
for more information. Cost is $90; enrollment limit is
30.
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Minicourse #7: SOLD
OUT Origami in Undergraduate Mathematics
Courses, organized by Thomas C. Hull, Merrimack
College; Part A: Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; Part
B: Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Those who have studied
origami may have unfolded their creations and marveled
at the pattern of creases in the paper that result. Lovely
mathematics, from geometry, combinatorics, and algebra
lurks behind these creases. This material is easily understood
by undergraduate majors, leads to numerous open questions,
and offers a great opportunity for handson, discoverybased
learning. This workshop will offer participants handson
experience with the main areas of "origamimath" (modular
origami, geometric constructions, and combinatorial modeling)
to incorporate into their own classes. Experience either
in paperfolding or in teaching geometry, algebra, or combinatorics
would be useful. Cost is $70; enrollment limit is 30.
SOLD OUT
Minicourse #8: Some Mathematics
of Leonhard Euler, organized by William W. Dunham,
Muhlenberg College, and Edward C. Sandifer, Western
Connecticut State University; Part A: Wednesday, 2:15
p.m. to 4:15 p.m.; Part B: Friday, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Euler wrote and published over 850 books and papers. They
form the basis for huge segments of modern mathematics.
We will survey his many contributions and take a close
look at a few of them. We will demonstrate how to use
Euler's 18thcentury mathematics in a 21stcentury environment,
and we will show by example why Laplace was giving good
advice when he said, "Read Euler, read Euler. He is the
master of us all." Cost is $60; enrollment limit is 60.
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Minicourse #9: PMET (Preparing
Mathematicians to Educate Teachers): Grades 712,
organized by Holly Hirst, Appalachian State University,
and Jack Y. Narayan, SUNY College at Oswego; Part
A: Wednesday, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Part B: Friday,
3:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. What background does a mathematician
need in order to teach mathematics courses for future
teachers? This is the question being addressed by the
PMET initiative funded by NSF and MAA. This minicourse
will provide anoverview of the initiative and will share
videos, handson activities, presentations, and discussions
related to teaching prospective middle grades and secondary
teachers. Participants will also learn about resources
that PMET has developed as well as programs planned for
the future. Cost is $60; enrollment limit is 60.
Minicourse #10: Teaching
Linear Algebra with Applications, organized by Gilbert
Strang, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Part
A: Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; Part B: Thursday,
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Linear algebra is a crucial subject
in the teaching and applications of mathematics. We hope
to suggest new ideas in its presentation. Among those
ideas is a range of problemswhose exploration (by hand
and mind, not by computer) will lead us to the major themes
of linear algebra. The pure and applied parts of this
subject will be intertwined in the minicourse, as they
are in reality. In a way, the minicourse itself will try
to show the fascination of teaching and learning and using
linear algebra. The problems will be distributed (with
some solutions!), and we describe our use of the course
page, web.mit.edu/18.06/www, and of computing, all open
for discussion. Cost is $60; enrollment limit is 60.
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Minicourse #11: Developing
Your Department's Assessment Plan, organized by William
G. Marion, Valparaiso University, and Bonnie Gold,
Monmouth University; Part A: Thursday, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00
p.m.; Part B: Saturday, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Most universities
and, thus, individual departments are under pressure from
accrediting agencies to develop and implement assessment
plans to assess student learning. During the minicourse
pairs (or larger groups) of members of a mathematical
sciences department will develop, in workshop format,
a proposed departmental mission statement and the skeleton
of its individualized assessment plan. Sample assessment
programs (developed by teams of mathematics faculty under
the auspices of the MAA's NSFfunded assessment project,
Supporting Assessment in Undergraduate Mathematics) will
be discussed, and participants will share ideas with groups
from similar departments to develop their own program.
Cost is $60; enrollment limit is 60.
Minicourse #12: Incorporating
Discrete Mathematics in the Preparation of K12 Mathematics
Teachers, organized by Lolina Alvarez, New
Mexico State University; Part A: Wednesday, 9:00 a.m.
to 11:00 a.m.; Part B: Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
More than a fixed set of topics, discrete mathematics
is a way of thinking that deals with important and interesting
problems in contemporary mathematics. Using some of these
problems as starting points, we will expose, at different
levels of sophistication, the mathematics of each situation.
We will emphasize the interplay between mathematical content
and methods of teaching and learning, and the insertion
in the school curriculum of topics from discrete mathematics.
Each
participant will receive a collection of materials, including
readytouse assignments. Cost is $60; enrollment limit
is 60.
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Minicourse #13: The
Fibonacci and Catalan Numbers, organized by Ralph
P. Grimaldi, RoseHulman Institute of Technology;
Part A: Wednesday, 2:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.; Part B: Friday,
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. In introductory courses in discrete
or combinatorial mathematics one encounters the Fibonacci
numbers and sometimes the Catalan numbers. This minicourse
will review and then extend this first encounter as it
examines some of the properties these numbers exhibit
as well as applications where these sequences arise. A
survey of applications dealing with chemistry, physics,
computer science, linear algebra, set theory, graph theory,
and number theory will show why these sequences are of
interest and importance. Cost is $60; enrollment limit
is 60.
Minicourse #14: Introduction
to Mathematical Card Tricks, organized by Colm
K. Mulcahy and Jeffrey A. Ehme, Spelman College;
Part A: Wednesday, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Part B: Friday,
4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Card tricks liven up any gatheringincluding
mathematics classesand can help to convince people that
math is fun and that there is a rational explanation for
some seemingly impossible events. This interactive introduction
to mathematical card tricks will survey applications of
permutations, binary and ternary numbers, probability
and more, and will feature classic tricks based on the
Gilbreath principle and faro shuffle. Cost is $60; enrollment
limit is 60.
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Minicourse #15: Fair
Enough? Mathematics of Equity, organized by John
C. Maceli and Stanley E. Seltzer, Ithaca College;
Part A: Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; Part B: Saturday,
9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Topics of fairness make terrific
subject matter for a contemporary mathematics course.
This minicourse introduces some fairness topicsapportionment,
voting power, elections, fair allocation and equity, the
censuswith the goals of helping participants learn about
these topics, see and use activities that support a course
in fairness, and prepare to teach such a course. We will
provide sample activities, projects, and a list of resources,
including original papers accessible to undergraduates.
Active participation is expected. Cost is $60; enrollment
limit is 60.
Minicourse #16: Getting
Students Involved in Undergraduate Research, organized
by Aparna W. Higgins, University of Dayton, and
Joseph A. Gallian, University of Minnesota, Duluth;
Part A: Thursday, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.; Part B: Saturday,
1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. This course will cover many aspects
of facilitating research by undergraduates, such as finding
appropriate problems, deciding how much help to provide,
and presenting and publishing the results. Examples will
be presented of research in summer programs and research
that can be conducted during the academic year. Although
the examples used will be primarily in the area of discrete
mathematics, the strategies discussed can be applied to
any area of mathematics. Cost is $60; enrollment limit
is 60.
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