This meeting was organised by CTI Mathematics and the introduction and first session were given by Pam Bishop of CTI Mathematics. She explained that the purpose of this session was to publicise various resources available on the World-wide-web which could be used in mathematics teaching. After a short talk, the delegates were led to a cluster and invited to explore a set of links that Pam had provided. Some of these links were to machines in North America and were more appropriate for morning viewing.
Among the more useful links for the teaching of mathematicswere the following.
Finite Mathematics and Applied Calculus Resource . This contains much information on calculus and students could be directed to certain of the chapters and interactive tests.
Simon Fraser - Organic Mathematics Home Page. Fill in this bit.
Mathwright library Fill in this bit
Geomaths MathHelp project Some maths modules here. The application is to geology but the maths and the geology are kept seperate
Studies in Mathematics Some useful information here. It follows a maths course given by Bryan Clair
On-line Mathematics Dictionary
Collection of Maths Cartoons Could be used to liven up a course etc.
While these resources are undoutably useful they should be treated as secondary electronic sources with our own materials being a primary source i.e. a situation in parallel with the recommended textbook and 'other useful textbooks'. Also, disclaimers should be issued along with warnings about these rosources changing without notice etc.
The session was also an opportunity to discuss any technical difficulties. To date the dept. of mathematics has mounted course information in latex and in mathematica. The trouble with latex is that equations have to be produced as images and do not really come out well in addition to being very slow. Mathematica requires the opening of files etc. and, when being used simply as a display tool is not fully appropriate. In future, when 'Mathematical Markup Language' is available, such problems will cease. In the meantime, two possible ways forward are i) IBM Techexplorer which can be downloaded and allows latex pages to be viewed directly and ii) Hyperlatex which combines aspects of latex and HTML. It will be necessary to look further at both packages before making any recommendations.
Tom Scott (Napier) talked on the SUMSMAN system networking the Scottish universities. Specific applications include the networking of lectures e.g. one lecture being simultaneously visible to students in Napier (phyisically present) and Stirling (virtually present) with full feedback facilities e.g. remore students were able to ask questions. A similar link took place between Heriot-Watt and Paisley.
Anthony Maciocia spoke on the Mathpool system which stores information relevant to maths courses in the Universities of Eastern Scotland. Currently the system is up and running but the documents mounted are still under development. The plan is that this system will be viewable by staff (local or remote) but not by students.
Finally there was a further practical session (see above).
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