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Questions tagged [community-colleges]

For questions relating to teaching math at the community college or two year college.

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33 votes
3 answers
1k views

What is the evidence about the effectiveness of remediation in math?

At many colleges in the United States, incoming students are required to take placement tests in basic skills such as math and reading. Those who score below a cut-off are required to take remedial ...
user avatar
29 votes
15 answers
4k views

What's the point of learning equivalence relations?

I teach an introductory discrete mathematics course at a community college to math and computing majors, usually in their sophomore year. As is common, it's partly used as the first foray into formal ...
Daniel R. Collins's user avatar
19 votes
4 answers
3k views

Whether to tell students how difficult (you think) a problem is

Background: Most textbooks end a section with a set of questions ranked either by topic or by difficulty. A distinction is often made between "exercises", which are for directly practicing a ...
Nick C's user avatar
  • 9,659
18 votes
14 answers
6k views

What mathematics activities get students physically moving?

What college mathematics topics can be taught in such a way that causes students to physically move around? Background: Recently, it was suggested to me by a faculty member (from another academic ...
Nick C's user avatar
  • 9,659
17 votes
4 answers
555 views

Making solutions to all problems freely available

I teach at a community college, almost all physics but also a math course now and then. My current practice is that I assign homework worth a very small number of points (1 point per problem, as ...
user avatar
15 votes
4 answers
706 views

How To Help a Quiet Class

This term I am teaching a very quiet precalculus class. I am having trouble getting students to answer questions or respond to verbal prompts, even questions I know they can answer. What I initially ...
Nick C's user avatar
  • 9,659
14 votes
5 answers
788 views

Community College Remedial Mathematics difficulties for students

I've been teaching remedial mathematics for the better part of a decade, and I've noticed a big trend in my classes lately. Many of my students are able to grasp the more complex ideas but still ...
Andrew Sanfratello's user avatar
13 votes
2 answers
562 views

Teaching limits and asymptotics at the same time

Having never been a mathematics educator, my question could be stupid and, if this is the case, please delete it. When I was young, from the very beginning of limits, we were teached that there are ...
Claude Leibovici's user avatar
11 votes
4 answers
1k views

Multiple students writing $y\frac{d}{dx}$ rather than $\frac{d}{dx}y$ -- why?

I'm currently teaching a couple of courses that have a calculus prerequisite, and within the last week I've had two students make notational mistakes that amount to writing $y\frac{d}{dx}$ rather than ...
user avatar
11 votes
4 answers
909 views

How to design multiple choice questions

I've seen the previously-asked questions about the effectiveness of multiple choice problems, but I want to know about design. What are best practices in multiple choice problem design? The "common" ...
Nick C's user avatar
  • 9,659
11 votes
3 answers
195 views

Regarding AMATYC's draft position statement on the academic preparation of mathematics faculty at two-year colleges

AMATYC has a draft position statement on the academic preparation of mathematics faculty at two-year colleges that will be voted on soon, if it hasn't happened already. The draft is attachment L in ...
alex.jordan's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
315 views

Formats for Calculus instruction at different colleges and universities

In the comments under another question, a couple of people expressed interest in how Calculus is taught at the University of Michigan. I'm not convinced a question that narrow is appropriate for this ...
mweiss's user avatar
  • 17.4k
10 votes
4 answers
522 views

Effective Method for Reviewing Homework in Class

I teach algebra at a community college. I assign homework which counts for 2 points. After going over the HW, I give the students a quiz (worth 20 points) with problems similar to the HW. I spend ...
Kara's user avatar
  • 365
9 votes
3 answers
533 views

Why is distribution prioritized over combining?

In every algebra (or basic analysis) book that I've seen, three properties of real numbers are taken as axiomatic: commutativity, association, and distribution of multiplication over addition [$a(b + ...
Daniel R. Collins's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
718 views

Tips for teaching A-level Maths/Further Maths students

I recently withdrew from a maths PhD to focus on other career options, and one of them that I'm very keen on is mathematics teaching. I applied for a college A-level maths lecturer role (teaching ...
user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
2k views

If I take Modern Analysis next year, will I be prepared to teach multivariable/vector calculus?

I’m currently getting my Master’s in Math at Portland State University so that I can teach community college mathematics. I’m specifically hoping to teach calculus, statistics, and linear algebra, so ...
blakedylanmusic's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
373 views

Is it appropriate to assign an extra credit homework question on the "next" session?

I am a new teacher teaching mathematics (College Algebra, Calculus, etc.) in a college. My wife has made an interesting suggestion that I would like to have a discussion here: Is it appropriate to ...
Zuriel's user avatar
  • 4,275
7 votes
1 answer
311 views

Measure of Improvement in Math Skills from Remediation with ALEKS

I am analyzing some data on ALEKS for my home institution (ALEKS, an acronym that stands for "Assessment and Learning in Knowledge Spaces", is an online tutoring and assessment program that includes ...
Matt Brenneman's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
206 views

What is accelerated developmental math education, and is it a good idea?

I teach physics and math at a community college in California. I got in a politically tinged discussion with a colleague today in which I claimed that one of socialism's weaknesses was its historical ...
user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
500 views

Advice on Full Time Community College Math Instructor Position

I have to do a teaching demo on the following: Please treat the committee as students in your Calculus II class. Please take 12-15 minutes to introduce your lesson on the Taylor Series and its ...
Gerardo's user avatar
  • 455
4 votes
2 answers
192 views

Spending time with students individually

I have a few students that need lots of individual attention. What do you have the other students do during this time? Review problems? Challenge problems? start on their homework? play a math ...
Kara's user avatar
  • 365
4 votes
1 answer
175 views

looking for good and clear examples about graph theory apllied to scheduling [closed]

I´m looking for some good and clear example/s about using graph theory in scheduling. (I´m interested in good books/web/PDF in this way) My target is to show the utility of graph theory to some ...
Mika Ike's user avatar
  • 401
4 votes
1 answer
247 views

Is there a remedial college textbook that includes basic logic?

Consider the case of a college remedial/developmental course; traditionally arithmetic and elementary algebra. If we had the opportunity to pick a new program for the course, and wanted to include ...
Daniel R. Collins's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
449 views

Good Textbook for combined Beginning and Intermediate Algebra Course

We'd like to create a course that covers beginning and intermediate algebra in one course (8 hours a week), getting students ready to succeed in precalc and calculus. I am at a community college. I ...
Sue VanHattum's user avatar
  • 21k
2 votes
2 answers
459 views

Line Integral Motivation

Is there a case to be made that the topic of line integrals should only involve vector fields? My colleagues and our textbook take the position that line integrals should only be taught from a vector ...
Nick C's user avatar
  • 9,659
2 votes
0 answers
6 views

Making an online math course "interactive"

I teach some fully online math courses (community college in the USA), and I'd like to hear how you have made your online classes successfully "interactive" along three axes: Student-to-...
Nick C's user avatar
  • 9,659
1 vote
2 answers
149 views

AB 86 Basic Skills Mathematics Courses at the Community College Level [closed]

I am a basic skills community college math instructor here in Los Angeles. This Spring is a very exciting time for our college. There are several campus initiatives taking place. Among them is the ...
Gerardo's user avatar
  • 455
-2 votes
4 answers
449 views

Good textbooks for a college Basic Geometry course?

I will be teaching geometry for the first time ever this summer. I teach at a community college, and we only offer this course in the summer. (Mostly high school students take it, but it is a college ...
Sue VanHattum's user avatar
  • 21k