The PBL unit sketched below is a possible replacement for a field trip in which I asked students to visit a natural history museum to see “in what ways you can interpret representations or images of nature (=the organisms, the processes of life, and the order in those organisms and processes) in terms of favored ideas about social arrangements” (i.e., adopting the interpretive themes of Raymond Williams from “Ideas of nature” in his book Problems in Materialism and Culture. London, Verso: 67-85). Museums are, however, very difficult to interpret because there are typically many displays from many periods of time and minimal information about when they were built and what the designers were thinking. The PBL to follow revolves around how much more needs to be known.
I’m rethinking an earlier post I noted that my teaching emphasizes only two of the five items that I consider to be linked together in my intellectual framework.
I’m often introducing alternatives, but not so often drawing students into building the constituency to support what is implied by the alternative. I put the alternative out there as if I’m saying it’s good and interesting, now you explore it—it’s up to you—just think about it.
I just completed an article that describes contrasting ideas for a sequence of topics as presented to students in a graduate course on epidemiological literacy. Because it could be the first draft of something more developed, I share the abstract and invite feedback.
Untested draft of method that represents
a) an extension of mathematical thinking (provisionally defined here);
b) follows the premise that no teacher would be prepared to guide every student in developing their mathematical thinking in the diverse ways that interest different people and
c) ditto in developing their life long learning to respond to changes in work, technology, commerce, and social life that continue to change our needs and capacities for mathematical thinking.
I produced this sketch of a course to stimulate discussion of how to address the challenge for professional or interdisciplinary doctoral programs, which always require statistics and or quantitative methods courses, in teaching those subjects in a way that accommodates the range of prior preparation that students bring into their programs (See previous post). Comments welcome, including “must cover” topics. Continue reading
A doctoral student in a professional program once told me that, even after completing the required statistics course, they could not even do a t-test. Professional or interdisciplinary doctoral programs always require statistics and or quantitative methods courses, but they often lack an approach to teaching those subjects that accommodates the range of prior preparation that students bring into their programs. Continue reading
“…Bringing critical analysis of science to bear on the practice and applications of science has not been well developed or supported institutionally. Given this, I have contributed actively to the development of society-at-a-small-scale, through new collaborations, programs, and other activities, new directions for existing programs, and collegial interactions across disciplines and regions…” (read more)