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|| Electronic Proceedings of the Eighth Annual ||
|| International Conference on Technology in Collegiate Mathematics ||
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CONTRIBUTED PAPER: 8-C85
Training In-service and Pre-service Teachers in the Use of Technology
Ronald J. Harshbarger
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Georgia Southern University
L.B. 8093, Statesboro, GA 30460
Phone: (912) 681-5202 Fax: (912) 681-0654
E-mail: ronharsh@gsvms2.cc.gasou.edu
ABSTRACT:
Because technology is becoming increasingly available in high schools,
it is especially important for in-service teachers and for future teachers
to be able to use the technology effectively in their classrooms. Because
many in-service teachers have had little contact with technology and
because pre-service teachers have no training in how to teach with
technology, a course was developed at Georgia Southern University that
would give them experience using various types of technology,
especially in the solution of real data problems, and would give them
a teaching model for the introduction to the use of technology in
their classrooms. Students in this course solve applied problems with
the use of graphics calculators, computer algebra systems, geometry
software, and the Internet.The course discusses applied problems from
the areas of algebra, trigonometry, geometry, and calculus In the
process of solving the assigned problems, students learn (or improve)
their skills in the use of graphics calculators, Mathematica,
Geometer's Sketchpad, e-mail, and the World Wide Web. Solution of
many problems requires the selection and use of appropriate technology
to model real data problems. Solution of some problems requires
researching the assumptions and finding appropriate formulas, which is
done on Netscape. Other problems require students to develop
formulas, and most of the problems require that students model real
data as the first step in the solution process.The course requires
students to work individually and in cooperative groups with
technology to solve applied problems, many of which involve modeling.
Each student is expected to be an expert in one type of technology,
and to demonstrate the use of that technology to lead in the solution
of an applied problem. Graduate students are cooperative learning
team leaders and assist in evaluating team member contributions.
These in-service and future teachers learn more than how to use
current technology. They learn how to manage cooperative learning,
and how to direct modeling of data with technology. They learn how
to select problems that are meaningful to their students and
reasonable for the technology they have available. Many in-service
teachers apply these skills immediately to their
classrooms.