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Mathematics Support Centres resources

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Research Papers (6)

Resource type A Framework for Discussing the Location of the Maths Drop-in Workshop
A framework for discussing the location of a mathematics drop-in workshop by Ian beverage. Mathematics Support Newsletter, Issue 2, 1994.
Resource type Evaluation of mathematics support centres: a literature review
Janette Matthews, Tony Croft, Duncan Lawson, and Dagmar Waller. (2013) Evaluation of mathematics support centres: a literature review. Teaching Mathematics Applications. first published online September 3, 2013 doi:10.1093/teamat/hrt013 Mathematics Support Centres (MSCs) have been established at universities in the UK and a number of other countries, of which colleagues from Australia and Ireland have been the most prolific in publishing about their work. Their main functions are to address issues surrounding the transition to university mathematics and to support students’ learning of mathematics and statistics across the wide variety of undergraduate courses. There is a growing body of research examining the operation and impact of MSCs. This article will review and synthesize available published research evidence so that informed decisions can be made about the value of mathematics support activity and the targeting of future funding. Evidence will be shown of the evaluation of MSCs in each of the following areas: the collection of data and the challenges that are presented in both quantitative and qualitative studies; analysis demonstrating MSC usage and activity; analysis showing the impact of MSCs on students, staff and the institution. The article will conclude by identifying areas where further research would be helpful.
Resource type Offering Training to Postgraduates who Tutor in Mathematics Support Centres
Tony Croft, Shazia Ahmed, Verity Aiken, Leslie Fletcher, Michael Grove, Andrew Mead, Chetna Patel, and Robert Wilson: (2013) Offering Training to Postgraduates who Tutor in Mathematics Support Centres. MSOR Connections 13(1), 3-7. DOI: 10.11120/msor.2013.13010003 This report summarises the deliberations which took place during a workshop held to discuss issues to consider when recruiting and training postgraduates to work in mathematics support centres. It distils the current wisdom of a group of mathematics support professionals with experience of managing and tutoring in mathematics support centres. There exists an active national network (the sigma network) for those involved in university mathematics and statistics support; this report concludes by identifying how members of the higher education community may participate in this network.
Resource type Summer internships in sigma-sw
Matthew Taylor, Ollie Bond, Callum Anderson and Andrew Kennedy. (2012) Summer internships in sigma-sw. MSOR Connections 12(1), 23-27. DOI: 10.11120/msor.2012.12010023 We report on the experience of Loughborough University’s Eureka Centre for Mathematical Confidence in establishing a small pilot project to provide one-to-one mathematics support for neurodiverse students who attend other local universities and where no such provision is available. We outline the background to the scheme and report on the three students involved.
Resource type The extent of mathematics learning support in UK higher education—the 2012 survey
Glynis Perkin, Tony Croft and Duncan Lawson. (2013) The extent of mathematics learning support in UK higher education—the 2012 survey. Teaching Mathematics Applications, 32 (4), 165-172 doi:10.1093/teamat/hrt014. Many higher education institutions have introduced some kind of mathematics learning support provision in response to the well-documented ‘mathematics problem’. In 2001 and 2004 two independent studies were undertaken to assess the number of universities offering mathematics learning support to students in addition to that provided through lectures, tutorials and the personal tutorial system. The results of these surveys showed a growth in the number of institutions providing support from 46 to 66. In this article we report on a survey carried out in 2012 to establish the current position regarding the provision of mathematics learning support in UK universities. In addition to determining the number of institutions providing mathematics learning support—there has been a further rise to 88—the article analyses the distribution of mathematics learning support by university mission group and by the type of support provided. The main findings are that the extent of mathematics learning support provision is largely independent of mission group and the dominant provision is drop-in support.
Resource type The redesign of a quantitative literacy class: student responses to a labbased format
Nicole Scherger (2013). The redesign of a quantitative literacy class: student responses to a lab based format, Teaching Mathematics and its Applications 2013 32(4), 206-213 doi: 10.1093/teamat/hrt003. The purpose of this study was to observe students’ retention, success and attitudes towards mathematics in a community college quantitative literacy course, taught in a lab-based format. The redesigned course implemented the daily use of Microsoft Excel in the classroom demonstrations, group activities and individual assignments, and utilized data from many fields of study. Results showed statistically significant growth in attitudes towards real-world application problems, the use of computers in mathematics, and the consideration of taking additional mathematics courses. There was also marginally significant growth in students’ attitudes towards the relevance and utility of mathematics. Higher retention and success rates in the redesigned course were also observed, although those rates were not found to be statistically significant.

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