Here’s how it happens: You’re in graduate school and were one of the best people in your major from your school. Honestly, that’s how you got into graduate school in the first place. You go in the first few weeks, you meet your new peers, and you engage in mathematical discussion. It’s really fun, being with people who are just as excited about math as you are. But then, a horrible thing happens. Someone, in conversation, mentions something you don’t know. And not only that, but the way they talk about it suggests that anyone who knows anything about anything knows what they’re talking about. Or maybe, in an even worse turn of events, this person is a professor. What are you going to do?
Continue reading “On “Imposter Syndrome”” »
A guest post by Allison Kotleba:
When most people think of basketball, they picture the tall players, the fast-paced plays, and the seemingly impossible shooting skills. However, spatiotemporal pattern recognition does not come to most people’s minds when discussing the game. In his Ted Talk titled The Math Behind Basketball’s Wildest Moves, Rajiv Maheswaran discusses the use of spatiotemporal pattern recognition in analyzing the players’ movements and using this analysis to help coaches and players create effective game strategies. This up-and-coming science aims to understand and to find patterns, meaning, and insight in all of the movement in our world today.
Continue reading “The Science of Moving Dots” »
In our last post, we invented a new geometry by re-scaling the inner product of the usual Euclidean plane. This modification did not change any of the angles in our geometry, in the sense that if two curves intersected in a particular Euclidean angle, then in our new geometry they still intersected in the same angle. However, distances and areas had shrunk and had done so significantly at points away from the origin. For instance, we found that the total area of the plane under our new metric was – a finite value.
Continue reading “What is a Manifold? (5/6)” »
There has been an ongoing call in mathematics education for students to be engaging in problem solving and collaborative groupwork. Although, many instructors find that when they put students in groups, some students seem disengaged and we may start to worry that groupwork is not nearly as motivating or interesting to students as we might expect. A natural response at this point is to blame the student for their lack of engagement. But, as Alfie Kohn, an author who writes extensively about education and student motivation, often states, “When students are off task, our first response should be to ask: What’s the task?” Indeed, this is one of the key elements to engaging students in the mathematics classroom; we need to design a good task.
Continue reading “Using Groupworthy Tasks to Increase Student Engagement” »