Electronic Proceedings of the Ninth Annual International Conference on Technology in Collegiate Mathematics

Reno, Nevada, November 7-10, 1996

Paper P012

Developing Connection Between Algebra and Geometry, Aided by the Power of the TI-92: A Study of Affine Geometry

Daniel R. Miller

Mathematics Department
Illinois State University
Campus Box 4520
Normal, IL 61790
Phone: (309) 438-7365

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As one reviews the current literature in mathematics education an overriding theme is apparent. That is the development of connections between the various components that separate the current curriculum into distinct discipline. In particular the NCTM acknowledges '[t]he interplay between geometry and algebra strengthens students' ability to formulate and analyze problem situations.' (NCTM p. 161) Additionally, within the area of geometry it suggests the integration of 'synthetic, coordinate and transformation geometry, [allowing] as many opportunities as possible to compare, contrast and translate among these systems.' (p. 161) Furthermore, current research suggests that integration of other components such as computer programming produces positive effects on students' mathematical achievement, their problem solving abilities, and their attitudes toward computers.

In the last three decades, many of the problems associated with the implementation of computer programming as an integral part of mathematics education have been overcome due to the rapid advances in electronic technology; size, cost, functionality, and availability. It is now practical , with the new technology, to begin to implement curriculum changes which integrate computer programming and mathematics instruction.

This project will examine integrating new technology with newly proposed curriculum concepts in algebra and geometry. In particular, we will look at the application of the programming features of the TI-92 calculator with respect to developing insights into affine geometry.

Keyword(s): TI-92, geometry