Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Remediation for Remedial Math #2

Some blog followers might be interested in a recent discussion-list post “Remediation for Remedial Math #2” [Hake (2012)]. The abstract reads:

ABSTRACT: In a previous post “Remediation for Remedial Math” I wrote: “In my opinion, the major problem may not be inherent difficulty for many students of the algebra on which remedial courses concentrate, but the fact that such courses are ineffectively taught as passive-student lecture courses. Jerry Epstein's (2007) 'Calculus Concept Inventory' http://bit.ly/bqKSWJ is beginning to show the abysmal ineffectiveness of standard introductory calculus courses. Similarly an 'Algebra Concept Inventory' might show the same thing for current algebra courses."

To which LrnAsst-L’s Jered Wasburn-Moses responded at http://bit.ly/KKRm0z (paraphrasing; my CAPS): “I think Hake misses a key difference between physics (his own field) and mathematics: EDUCATIONAL INERTIA. By the time they reach college developmental education courses, students have strongly-entrenched beliefs about mathematical content, mathematical classrooms, and themselves as mathematical learners.”

But my experience has been that the same is true for K-16 physics and other sciences, in that not only students but also teachers and professors have strongly-entrenched beliefs about education. So central is the problem of “educational inertia” that I was moved to post:

(a) Lesson #13 of “Lessons from the Physics Education Reform Effort” (Hake, 2002) at http://bit.ly/aL87VT: “The monumental inertia of the educational system may thwart long-term national reform”;

(b) “Eleven Quotes in Honor of Inertia” [Hake (2006)] at http://bit.ly/g7jdeU;

(c) an essay “Can Scientific Research Enhance the Art of Teaching?” [Hake (2007b)] at http://bit.ly/a7xJxR (1.2 MB): “University Leaders Bemoan the Inertia of Higher Education: Why Is It So Slow To Recognize the Value of Interactive Engagement Methods in Promoting Higher-Level Learning?”

To access the complete 13 kB post please click on http://bit.ly/KZafu5.

Richard Hake, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Indiana University
Links to Articles: http://bit.ly/a6M5y0
Links to SDI Labs: http://bit.ly/9nGd3M
Blog: http://bit.ly/9yGsXh
Academia: http://iub.academia.edu/RichardHake
Twitter https://twitter.com/#!/rrhake

“If you try to introduce people to a paradigm shift,
they will hear what you have to say and
then interpret your words in terms of their old paradigm.
What does not fit, they will not hear.”
Myron Tribus (2001), former director of the
“Center for Advanced Engineering Study at MIT” -
see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myron_Tribus

REFERENCES [URL shortened by http://bit.ly/ and accessed on 15 May 2012.]
Hake, R.R. 2012. “Remediation for Remedial Math #2,” online on the OPEN! AERA-L archives at http://bit.ly/KZafu5. Post of 15 May 2012 11:31:16-0700 to AERA-L and Net-Gold. The abstract and link to the complete post are also being transmitted to several discussion lists.

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