The project will apply the approach of Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL), which has been successful in chemistry, to undergraduate and pre-calculus and first-semester calculus courses.
The three main goals of the project are to create new POGIL learning materials for Calculus and Pre-Calculus where reform will have a large and visible impact; develop faculty expertise within the mathematics community to implement these new materials by presenting math-specific POGIL workshops at national mathematics meetings and POGIL summer workshops; and to conduct in-depth research on undergraduate mathematics education by implementing a case study design to examine learning in POGIL MATH class room contexts.
The project team is in a unique position to produce exemplary classroom POGIL calculus materials because of their combined expertise in (1) authoring high-quality POGIL chemistry activities, (2) curricular innovations in mathematics, (3) mathematics education research, and (4) evaluation, together with the support and training and dissemination offered by The POGIL Project. Because POGIL is a nationally tested and proven pedagogical strategy based on research on how students learn, classroom materials generated as part of the proposed project are expected to generate results in mathematics similar to those in chemistry: improved student learning, decreased attrition, (especially among undrerrepresented minority students), improved attitudes toward mathematics, and increased faculty adoptions. The case study design will inform the mathematics community about how POGIL activities can challenge student misconceptions in calculus as identified in the mathematics education literature, as well as how classroom context affects implementation in POGIL activities. The ongoing evaluation will examine, among other things, faculty professional development, and will track the state of change of faculty participating in project dissemination activities. The project will generate an expanded network of POGIL experts, spanning a variety of post-secondary institutions, regions throughout the U.S., and disciplines, thus having a potentially transformative effect on mathematics instruction in the United States.
Catherine Beneteau (U. of South Florida)
Zdenka Guadarrama (Rockhurst University)
Jill Guerra (U. of Arkansas - Ft. Smith)
Laurie Lenz (Marymount University)