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diy math course this fall

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diy math course this fall

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from http://wiki.p2pu.org/DIY-Math --

COURSE TITLE: DIY Math

COURSE TWEET (200 CHARACTERS OR LESS):

This course is designed to build independent study and peer-support
skills for mathematics learners at all levels. It will require both
self-directedness and active participation.

FACILITATOR:

Joe Corneli (Board Member at PlanetMath.org; Ph. D. student at the
Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University, UK;
http://metameso.org/~joe)

COURSE DESCRIPTION (NO MORE THAN 500 WORDS):
This is a mathematics course open to all topics and levels (unless
participants come up with a compelling reason to focus during the
course). The main "pedagogical" reasons for such radical openness
are:

(1) To give people one extra reason to take initiative in their own
learning. One might say "I've always wanted to learn about P vs NP",
another might say "I've always wanted to learn precalculus" -- both
are overcoming a mental and emotional hurdle. I'm not suggesting that
it's the *same* hurdle, but there are probably some similarities. In
the same way that a writer's workshop can serve writers with different
interests, this "DIY Math" workshop can serve mathematics learners
with different interests by providing a place to talk about their
challenges and successes.

(2) To help people develop skills at co- or peer-to-peer teaching.
Ultimately people have to do their own homework exercises and so on,
but one can also learn a lot in mathematics by helping others. My
"teaching philosophy" is that there are no stupid questions, even if
there are a lot of dumb answers. Let's see if we can get better at
answering questions together.

There is no official text book, but participants may want to take a
look at "How to solve it" (or other books) by George Polya.
Participants will get access to a new "beta" grade libre software
platform being developed to support mathematical communication; we'll
also have a mailing list available as a fall-back mechanism.

PREREQUISITES:

The willingness to learn.

AUDIENCE:

I hope the participants will want to both *ask* and *answer*
questions. Collectively I hope that they will have varied backgrounds
and aspirations.

EXPERIENCE: I have a bachelor's degree in mathematics from New College
of Florida (2002), and I did a couple years of math grad school before
switching to a more "DIY" approach. My current Ph. D. project has to
do with "Crowdsourcing a Personal Learning Environment for
Mathematics", and this course can be considered to be an informal dry
run.


Sign up is August 25th through September 8, and courses start September 15th. I think if you visit http://p2pu.org during sign up the rest of the process should be self-explanatory. In the mean time, I set up a mailing list to discuss ideas about the course at http://groups.google.com/group/diy-math -- feel free to join that group and start discussing things :).

I'm game. What do I need to do?

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