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Mathematics Education resources

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Guides (3)

Resource type A Guide to Puzzle-based Learning in STEM subjects
This report is part of a project funded by the Centre for Learning and Academic Development (CLAD) at the University of Birmingham. The objective of the project was to develop new learning resources to enable staff working in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) to incorporate puzzle-based learning in their teaching. This guide to puzzle-based learning accompanies a selection of mathematical and logic-based puzzles, grouped by mathematical topic and approximate â??levelâ??, as judged by our experiences. It is written to provide advice to staff on how to adapt such puzzles for use in their subject at the appropriate level(s). Badger M., Sangwin, C.J., Ventura-Medina E. and Thomas C.R. (2012) A Guide to Puzzle-based Learning in STEM Subjects, University of Birmingham, http://web.mat.bham.ac.uk/C.J.Sangwin/Publications/GuideToPuzzleBasedLearningInSTEM.pdf
Resource type Getting Started in Pedagogic Research within the STEM Disciplines (HE STEM)
This guide edited by Michael Grove and Tina Overton has been developed for those looking to begin pedagogic research within the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. Its purpose is to provide an accessible introduction to pedagogic research along with a practical guide containing hints and tips on how to get started. The guide was produced following a series of national workshops and conferences that were started in 2011 by the National HE STEM Programme and continued in 2012 with the support of the Higher Education Academy.
Resource type Tutoring in a Mathematics Support Centre - A Guide for Postgraduate Tutors (sigma)
This sigma Guide is written for postgraduate students who are working in, or who want to work in, mathematics support centres. It distils the wisdom of seven people, who have many years of experience in mathematics education and in the work of support centres, into a practical resource for postgraduate students. In addition, it contains activities which can be used during training sessions to simulate working in a mathematics support centre. The guide is edited by Tony Croft and Michael Grove and authored by A.C.Croft, J.W.Gillard, M.J.Grove, J.Kyle, A.Owen, P.C.Samuels and R.H.Wilson.

Motivating Mathematics (4)

Resource type Fractals - Stuart Price
In this mathtutor extension video, Stuart Price explains the concepts of fractal geometry and illustrates a number of practical applications. This resource is released under a Creative Commons license Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivative Works and the copyright is held by Skillbank Solutions Ltd.
Resource type Parliamentary debate - Tony McWalter
In this mathtutor extention video Tony McWalter MP discusses the relevance of studying quadratic equations. This resource is released under a Creative Commons license Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivative Works and the copyright is held by Skillbank Solutions Ltd.
Resource type Reflections - Tony McWalter
Tony McWalter reflects on the role of mathematics in decision making, mathematics teaching and the view of society and young people towards maths in this mathstutor extention video. This resource is released under a Creative Commons license Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivative Works and the copyright is held by Skillbank Solutions Ltd.
Resource type The need for maths - Adrian Smith
This mathtutor extention video shows Adam Smith discussing the place of mathematics in society, it's importance and why students are not continuing to study mathematics. The report 'Making mathematics count' is also available. This resource is released under a Creative Commons license Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivative Works and the copyright is held by Skillbank Solutions Ltd.

Research Papers (8)

Resource type A Report on the Feasibility of Mobile Devices for Mathematics Learning in Higher Education (sigma)
This sigma CETL report by Chengliang Hu presents an investigation into the educational potential of mobile devices in supporting mathematics teaching and learning. (2007) The zip file contains the full report and all appendices.
Resource type Achievement and behaviour in undergraduate mathematics: personality is a better predictor than gender
Alcock, L., Attridge, N., Kenny, S., & Inglis, M. (2014). Achievement and behaviour in undergraduate mathematics: personality is a better predictor than gender. Research in Mathematics Education, 16 (1), 1-17. DOI:10.1080/14794802.2013.874094. We investigated two factors that predict students' achievement and behaviour in undergraduate mathematics: gender and personality. We found that gender predicted students' achievement and behaviour when considered in isolation, but ceased to be predictive when personality profiles were taken into account. Furthermore, personality accounted for significantly more variance in undergraduates' achievement and behaviour than did gender, but the converse was not the case. We therefore argue that personality provides the more productive lens through which to understand the behaviour of undergraduate mathematics students. We relate this finding to recent research emphasising gender differences in mathematics education, and suggest that researchers wishing to promote equity in participation at and beyond the undergraduate level should consider shifting their focus to individual differences in personality.
Resource type CETL-MSOR Conference Proceeding 2006
Proceedings of the CETL-MSOR Conference 2006, held at Loughborough University 11-12 September 2006, edited by David Green and published by the MSOR Network.
Resource type Increasing the impact of mathematics support on aiding student transition in higher education.,
This article presents a novel approach to maths support designed and adopted by the University of Lincoln, School of Engineering, to bridge this transition gap for students, offer continued support through Assessment for Learning and Individual Learning Plans, and ultimately increase student achievement, engagement and retention. The article then extends this proven approach and discusses recently implemented enhancements through the use of online diagnostic testing and a ‘student expert’ system to harness mathematical knowledge held by those gifted and talented students (often overlooked by higher education institutions) and to promote peer-to-peer mentoring. The article shows that with the proven system in place, there is a marked increase in student retention compared with national benchmark data, and an increase in student engagement and achievement measured through student feedback and assessments. M. Gallimore and J. Stewart, (2014) Increasing the impact of mathematics support on aiding student transition in higher education., Teaching Mathematics Applications, 33 (2), 98-109, doi:10.1093/teamat/hru008
Resource type Making Mathematics Count
Adrian Smith's inquiry into post-14 mathematics education. (2004) There is a accompanying video 'The need for maths - Adrian Smith'
Resource type Predicting Performance of first year engineering students and the importance of assessment tools therein
This research paper by Lee, Harrison, Pell and Robinson presents statistical regression models which aim to predict overall first year mechanical engineering students' performance. Data was collected on overall first year mark against 14 variables. The regression models produced showed the positive effect of almost one grade boundary of students visiting the mathematics learning support centre. The paper is published in Engineering Education, 2008, 3(1), 44-51. DOI: 10.11120/ened.2008.03010044
Resource type Provision of maths support for student in higher education institutions
Nilsson, Galina and Luchinskaya, D. (2012) Provision of maths support for student in higher education institutions, The 40th Annual Congress of the Nordic Educational Research Association: March 8-10, 2012, Copenhagen, http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-4859 This study analyses the efficiency of maths support provision in two universities: Leeds Metropolitan University, UK and Högskolan Väst, Sweden. This is an on-going collaboration between two universities and in this paper we present the results of this study focussing on the academic staff prospective, using questionnaires, observations and interviews with tutors.
Resource type Supporting students making the transition from school to university– A national and local view of the maths skills crisis in the UK
The authors have first-hand experience of supporting students with weak maths skills making the transition from School to University within a Business School. In this paper the authors will summarise the key messages and recommendations to emerge from the literature in the light of their own experiences and research findings. We will also give an overview of the types of open source software that are currently available for maths skills support in the UK, and consider ways in which such on-line resources might be utilised in order to encourage and enhance students’ development of maths skills in a Business School context. Cottee M., Relph A. and Robins, K. (2013) Supporting students making the transition from school to university– A national and local view of the maths skills crisis in the UK. http://library.iated.org/view/COTTEE2013SUP

Staff Resources (12)

Resource type And the winner is... mathematics support
At the Times Higher Awards ceremony on 24th November 2011, it was announced that Loughborough and Coventry Universities had won the award for Outstanding Support for Students, in recognition of the work of sigma, Centre for Excellence in University-wide mathematics and statistics support. Whilst sigma at Coventry and Loughborough Universities received the award, the real winner was mathematics and statistics support across the country. In this booklet, we outline how sigma's work has contributed to the growing recognition of the importance of mathematics and statistics support and to the development of a national and international community of practitioners. Authors : Ciaran Mac an Bhaird and Duncan Lawson
Resource type Investigation of International Mathematics Cultures
Recruitment to post-graduate mathematics programmes and to lecturer positions in mathematics departments in UK universities has become dominated by international students and staff. Although mathematics is generally regarded as ‘the universal language’, the reality is that different countries have very different cultures when it comes to the teaching and learning of mathematics. There are significant variations in the pre-university mathematical experience, in terms of the curriculum content, learning styles, levels of abstraction, and assessment methods. Even within the UK, a considerable number of pre-higher education mathematics qualifications are available and, it is not always clear what mathematics can be expected when students commence their degree programmes. With increasing numbers of international students and academic staff in UK HE, the scene is becoming more complicated. Students enter degree courses with a wide range of backgrounds and bring with them very different experiences. At the same time, academic staff, having experienced different education systems, may have some unrealistic expectations from their students. With an HEA Teaching Development Grant (Individual Scheme 2012 -2013), this research by Aiping Xu, Coventry University has investigated the mathematical cultures of a range of the main international suppliers (of students and staff) to UK HE mathematics departments. Using semi-structured interviews and online questionnaires, personal experiences of academic staff who have studied or taught more than two educational systems have been drawn upon. Some examinations have also been studied in detail.
Resource type Mathematical transitions: a report on the mathematical and statistical needs of students undertaking undergraduate studies in various disciplines
Mathematics and Statistics are essential to the university curricula of many disciplines. The purpose of the Higher Education Academy STEM project was to investigate the mathematical and statistical requirements in a range of discipline areas including: Business and Management, Chemistry, Economics, Geography, Sociology and Psychology. Reports were commissioned from discipline experts to provide a strong evidence base to inform developments within the disciplines and dialogue between the higher education and pre-university sectors. This report by Jeremy Hodgen, Mary McAlinden and Anthony Tomei summarises the findings of these project reports and of similar work in other disciplines. It introduces some high-level contextual evidence from the pre-university sector, in particular data about trends in public examinations, and highlights important policy developments in pre-university Mathematics education. The report also includes high level recommendations regarding Mathematics and Statistics within the context of other disciplines, with a particular focus on the point of transition into higher education. (2014)
Resource type Mathematics after 16: the state of play, challenges and ways ahead
This report is based on a presentation given by the author, Josh Hillman, on 17 March at the first Q-Step conference, Counting them in: quantitative social science and the links between secondary and higher education. Other presentations from the day are available at www.nuffieldfoundation.org/q-step. Josh Hillman is Director of Education at the Nuffield Foundation. Josh Hillman, Mathematics after 16: the state of play, challenges and ways ahead, (London: Nuffield Foundation, 2014)
Resource type Numbas Editor
Numbas is a free, open-source e-assessment web-based system developed and used extensively at Newcastle University (http://numbas.mathcentre.ac.uk/). Numbas consists of a set of tools which produce SCORM-compliant exam packages particularly suitable for creating formative assessment and learning materials in mathematics, statistics and numeracy.
Resource type ROBBINS REVISITED - Bigger and Better Higher Education
A report by The Rt Hon. David Willetts MP, Minister for Universities and Science, revisiting issues in Higher Education first reported on by Robbins in 1963.
Resource type Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in Business and Management and tackling transition
This report by Michaela J Cottee, Amanda Relph and Karen Robins is one of a series of outputs produced by the Higher Education Academy STEM project: Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in the disciplines and tackling transition. The project seeks to provide a strong evidence base to inform dialogue between the pre-university and higher education sectors about the need for students to develop and apply mathematical and statistical skills within a range of discipline areas within higher education. Throughout a particular emphasis is placed on the transition into university study. The focus of this report is the Business and Management discipline. The report examines a wide range of factors including the mathematical and statistical skills requirements within the discipline, key sector requirements and staff and student expectations. Evidence collected from a literature review, surveys and a discussion event is presented and used to inform findings and recommendations. (2014)
Resource type Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in Chemistry and tackling transition
This report by Dudley E Shallcross and Paul C Yates is one of a series of outputs produced by the Higher Education Academy STEM project: Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in the disciplines and tackling transition. The project seeks to provide a strong evidence base to inform dialogue between the pre-university and higher education sectors about the need for students to develop and apply mathematical and statistical skills within a range of discipline areas within higher education. Throughout a particular emphasis is placed on the transition into university study. The focus of this report is the Chemistry discipline. The report examines a wide range of factors including the mathematical and statistical skills requirements within the discipline, key sector requirements and staff and student expectations. Evidence collected from a literature review, surveys and a discussion event is presented and used to inform findings and recommendations. (2014)
Resource type Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in Economics and tackling transition
This report by Peter Dawson is one of a series of outputs produced by the Higher Education Academy STEM project: Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in the disciplines and tackling transition. The project seeks to provide a strong evidence base to inform dialogue between the pre-university and higher education sectors about the need for students to develop and apply mathematical and statistical skills within a range of discipline areas within higher education. Throughout a particular emphasis is placed on the transition into university study. The focus of this report is the Economics discipline. The report examines a wide range of factors including the mathematical and statistical skills requirements within the discipline, key sector requirements and entrance qualifications. Evidence collected from a literature review and a discussion event is presented and used to inform findings and recommendations. (2014)
Resource type Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in Geography and tackling transition
This report by Catherine Souch, Katherine Fitzpatrick and Richard Harris is one of a series of outputs produced by the Higher Education Academy STEM project: Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in the disciplines and tackling transition. The project seeks to provide a strong evidence base to inform dialogue between the pre-university and higher education sectors about the need for students to develop and apply mathematical and statistical skills within a range of discipline areas within higher education. Throughout a particular emphasis is placed on the transition into university study. The focus of this report is the Geography discipline. The report examines a wide range of factors including the mathematical and statistical skills requirements within the discipline, key sector requirements and staff and student expectations. Evidence collected from a literature review, surveys, interviews and a discussion event is presented and used to inform findings and recommendations. (2014)
Resource type Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in Sociology and tackling transition
This report by Julie Scott Jones and John Goldring is one of a series of outputs produced by the Higher Education Academy STEM project: Skills in Mathematics and Statistics in the disciplines and tackling transition. The project seeks to provide a strong evidence base to inform dialogue between the pre-university and higher education sectors about the need for students to develop and apply mathematical and statistical skills within a range of discipline areas within higher education. Throughout a particular emphasis is placed on the transition into university study. The focus of this report is the Sociology discipline. The report examines a wide range of factors including the mathematical and statistical skills requirements within the discipline, key sector requirements and staff and student expectations. Evidence collected from a literature review, surveys and discussion events is presented and used to inform findings and recommendations. (2014)
Resource type Vision for science and mathematics education
A report containing the Royal Society's Vision for science and mathematics education over the next 20 years. This includes a proposal for a broad and balanced curriculum, where young people study science and mathematics until 18 alongside arts, humanities and social sciences. The Royal Society Policy Centre report 01/14 issued June 2014 DES3090.

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