Questions related to the teaching and learning of mathematics.

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3
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4answers
1k views

Random variables: How would you explain it to a beginner?

Different types of random variables: (discrete) Binomial, hypergeometric, geometric, Poisson (continuous) Uniform, normal, exponential Random variables are very useful tools when solving simple and ...
5
votes
2answers
461 views

Programs for precocious prodigies

I am the director of my university's mathematics honors program, and we just had an inquiry from the parent of a 15 year old who has already completed most of the math courses for a standard ...
33
votes
12answers
2k views

Resources for a curious beginner mathematician

I have a friend whose experience of math in school was horrible (each teacher, she says, either left or was fired the year after she had them). I've been teaching her about various things: cantor's ...
1
vote
1answer
230 views

Mathematical disciplines [closed]

Once I spoked to a mathematician about mathematics and he asked me what was my favourite area in Maths. My answer was "Chaos Theory" and he said this is not a discipline in Mathematics. What is a ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

What does Khan Academy have to offer? Depth? Rigor?

Khan Academy - http://www.khanacademy.org/ - is often cited as a great online resource for learning mathematics and other subjects. I have heard many good things about this website and was wondering ...
8
votes
4answers
776 views

How To Reach The “Next Level” of Mathematics

I am a junior-high pre-algebra student. I feel that my class is holding me back, so I wanted to learn "higher-level math". So what should I learn now? What do you believe is a "next step"?
1
vote
4answers
186 views

Looking for a simple problem for math demonstration

I'm holding a 3-5 minute speech next week on mathematical problem solving, and how it makes me happy, to 15-20 non-mathematicians. As a part of it, I had thought about demonstrating two problems, but ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Experiences with Kumon

We have enrolled our 5 year old son in Kumon which is an after school math and reading enrichment program of Japanese origin. While he is learning lots of things (currently learning how to add i.e., ...
15
votes
4answers
789 views

Why study Hopf Algebras?

I'm looking for reasons that motivate the study of Hopf Algebra, like its applications in other branches of mathematics or maybe with physics. The first I've got is that they're interesting by ...
27
votes
8answers
4k views

How can I learn to “read maths” at a University level?

When I look at math, it's like my mind goes fuzzy. The only way to describe it is in terms of what I can relate it to. You know how when you read, you see the letters and words, but your brain picks ...
17
votes
7answers
725 views

Exciting games and material to motivate children to math

We are a group of people trying to motivate children, especially living in the countryside, to science and math. We have different activities with children such as doing scientific experiments and ...
68
votes
7answers
3k views

A Case Against the “Math Gene”

I'm currently teaching a mathematics course for elementary educators (think of it as math methods, but with less focus on methods and more focus on content). In a student's essay, I encountered the ...
2
votes
0answers
225 views

Am I graduate if I take my bachelor degree in Italy?

I don't know if it is appropriate to ask here such a question since it doesn't involve a specific mathematical problem, but I think such information will be useful for many people like me... My real ...
1
vote
5answers
472 views

Good discrete mathematics notes?

Good morning, Do you know of a good resource for discrete mathematics notes, lectures and/or videos? I found the classes + notes given to be lacking at my university... Topics covered thus far: ...
14
votes
5answers
698 views

Do non-mathematical fields use the appropriate level of analytic/probabilistic rigor?

Talking to students in different areas and taking different classes in math, physics, electrical engineering I have been struck by the differing amounts of rigor in use. I know little about economics ...
1
vote
2answers
301 views

What is the origin of the prefix logic notation used in WFF 'N PROOF?

The classic "modern logic" game of WFF 'N PROOF uses a set of symbols to represent logical relations that I've seen used nowhere else: $C$ for then; $A$ for or; $K$ for and; $E$ for if and only if; ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Grad degree that mainly deals with probability/game theory/optimization?

I'm currently working but am going to take classes as a non-degree student to beef up the math part of my background. I've only taken calc 1-3, ODEs, linear algebra, logic, and decision theory so my ...
10
votes
4answers
841 views

Is there a more efficient method of trig mastery than rote memorization?

I would like to get alot better at trig than I am. What is the best/most efficient method? Thanks much in advance Joe
7
votes
2answers
558 views

Historical basis and mathematical significance of Riemann surfaces

It is written in Riemann Surfaces (Oxford Graduate Texts in Mathematics) by Simon Donaldson, that: "[t]he theory of Riemann surfaces occupies a very special place in mathematics. It is a culmination ...
4
votes
1answer
242 views

Request for “Nice” Papers in i) Differential Geometry ii)Analysis iii)Topology, to Go Over

Everyone: I am a little frustrated with the progress in my bottom-up learning process, and I think I might get better results by doing some more top-down, i.e., by reading and trying to make sense of ...
6
votes
2answers
456 views

Self-Teaching: Is Geometry the Nexus of all Mathematics?

Necessary prologue: I'd really like to become more fluent in the language of mathematics. I don't have a schedule that permits me taking a class and any on-line tutors that I find seem relatively ...
12
votes
4answers
292 views

Should the domain of a function be inferred?

It is a common practice to have students of elementary algebra infer the domain of a function as an exercise. I believe this is contrary to the spirit of the definition of a function as a collection ...
15
votes
7answers
4k views

How to study for analysis?

I am currently a first year undergraduate majoring in mathematics. I'm taking an introductory analysis course and find it very hard compared to other math couses. I know that the topics covered in the ...
5
votes
1answer
405 views

Is it ever really Pi Time?

Walking with my son at 3:14pm the other day, I mentioned to him, "Hey, it's Pi Time". My son knows 35 digits of $\pi$ (don't ask), and knows that it's transcendental. He replied, "is it exactly ...
1
vote
2answers
334 views

List of topics for a 'Quantitative Reasoning' Course

I am planning to develop a course which I tentatively call as 'Quantitative Reasoning'. The goal of the course is to equip a typical undergraduate student with sound quantitative reasoning skills so ...
72
votes
15answers
14k views

Mathematical equivalent of Feynman's Lectures on Physics?

I'm slowly reading through Feynman's Lectures on Physics and I find myself wondering, is there an analogous book (or books) for math?
11
votes
6answers
3k views

Advice for Self-Study

I am a senior in high school who has taught myself through Calculus BC and I got a 5 on the exam. However, I have taken all the math I can at my school. I have also taught myself multi-variable ...
1
vote
2answers
85 views

histogram of data

may be this very easy. because of lack of maths skills I'm posting this. ...
43
votes
3answers
8k views

What is the importance of Calculus in today's Mathematics?

For engineering (e. g. electrical engineering) and physics, Calculus is important. But for a future mathematician, is the classical approach to Calculus still important? What is normally taught, as a ...
6
votes
3answers
463 views

Why $\frac{1}{\infty } \approx 0 $ and $ \frac{1}{0} = {\infty}$?

First I have checked the search option but found nothing relevant to my problem and also level of math. I just started learning the language of mathematics, on my own and I have trouble understanding ...
-1
votes
1answer
326 views

preparation for calculus [closed]

What are the differences in the level and kind of preparedness for calculus typically found in students beginning a calculus course at a university in the USA today, and those beginning such a course ...
7
votes
3answers
351 views

Does this class of cipher have a name? What weaknesses does it have?

Some Background In October I have been asked by the school I teach at to organise and lead 'a hands-on cryptography session' for a bright group of 13 year olds to follow a talk on Enigma by an ...
1
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1answer
1k views

Differences among James Stewart calculus texts?

Can anyone describe the differences between James Stewarts's Calculus and Calculus: Concepts and Context? They appear to be nearly identical, though slightly arranged versions of exactly the same ...
17
votes
4answers
4k views

Bridging any “gaps” between AP Calculus and College/Univ level Calculus II

I've been asked to tutor a soon-to-be college freshman who has taken AP Calculus and successfully earned college credit for first semester calculus. He has been admitted to an Engineering program, ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

I want to learn math!

Let me introduce myself. My name is Filip and I am going to 10th grade now. My school deals with electrotechnics and computers (programming, hardware etc.) I was always good at math but not quite ...
7
votes
5answers
2k views

Experiences with Rudin?

So I am trying to tutor a friend in analysis. This is her first time with proofs. We are on chapter 2 – the topology chapter – of Rudin's Principles of Mathematical Analysis and ...
1
vote
1answer
174 views

online classes for math masters pre reqs

I'm currently getting my masters in video game development and next year want to start on my math masters. Some of the pre-reqs I need to still take are calc 3 and linear algebra, does anyone know of ...
16
votes
5answers
769 views

Definition of definition

I was wondering if there is a good way to "define" what definition means exactly in mathematics. Since the answers may be subjective or philosophical, I want to ask only for references on this topic. ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

Motivating linear algebra for economics students?

I'm a tutor for the introductory linear algebra course at my school; this course is required for most upper division economics classes, so a lot of my tutees are economics majors. This is a typical ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

What's wrong with me? [closed]

Over the past few days I have been pondering about this: I enjoy technical things (like programming and stuff) and try to find the patterns and algorithms in everything. My life is number oriented. ...
3
votes
0answers
204 views

How to Create a Lesson Plan with Wolfram Alpha

This will be my first post in this forum. I am so excited to see a lot of interesting posting from the community. From the FAQ, I learned that Mathematics stack exchange discussed about mathematical ...
3
votes
4answers
363 views

Mathematics necessary for a Master's degree in CS

I'm contemplating doing a Master's degree in Computer Science at night school. What sort of mathematics am I likely to encounter?
7
votes
2answers
262 views

Enlightening misunderstandings of test questions

What enlightening misunderstandings of test questions have you encountered? Of course, there are jokes about this, such as literal (graphic) “expansion” of the power of a binomial, but I am asking ...
41
votes
12answers
2k views

Examples of results failing in higher dimensions

A number of economists do not appreciate rigor in their usage of mathematics and I find it very discouraging. One of the examples of rigor-lacking approach are proofs done via graphs or pictures ...
4
votes
2answers
356 views

Study program for algebra for an math-phobic person

I have a female friend (Mid 20's) who wants to get an associates degree, who has an absolute phobia of math, and algebra in particular. I'm trying to find a good program that can help her to study ...
1
vote
3answers
598 views

Distance from a point to a line in vector geometry - real world applications?

In vector geometry it is a standard example how to calculate the distance between a point and a line in space. However are there any interesting real world applications of this. I.e. where one wants ...
10
votes
7answers
9k views

practical uses of matrix multiplication

The use of matrix multiplication is usually given with graphics initially (scalings, translations, rotations, etc). Then there are more in-depth examples such as counting the number of walks between ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

Grasping mathematics

First, I'm not trying to make this sound like a "poor-me" story. I understand fully that every decision I've made leading to this is my fault. I am genuinely looking for advice. So, I am a high ...
8
votes
3answers
619 views

Which of these courses to take if one intends to go to grad school in pure math (rank please)

could you rank these classes in terms of necessity to take if I intend to pursue a Ph.D in pure math? I don't know if I can fit everything, but I want to make sure I take the most important ones: ...
2
votes
1answer
275 views

Web 2.0 and mathematics for high school students

First of all, if this is not the right place to ask, I am sorry and just close this topic. I'm trying to introduce Web 2.0 into my Math class for teenagers in the range of 12-16 years old. I've ...