OBSERVATIONS AND REFLECTIONS

Prior to the Workshop, participants were invited to contribute position papers that reflected important issues in technical education that grew out of their own experiences. Many of their ideas coincided with the four major themes discussed in the working groups: Tracking, Core Curriculum, Student Needs, and Articulation. Some of their thoughts are summarized below.

ON TRACKING
  • Because of the volatile nature of the workplace and because adolescents ' interests change so dramatically throughout their education, it is a mistake to classify students according to their mathematical skills and aspirations.

– CAROLE LACAMPAGNE

  • 65% of high school students express an interest in attending college, 48% actually enroll, 18% eventually get a four-year degree, but only 9% take advanced mathematics courses in college.

– MARTIN NAHEMOW

  • We need to consider the consequences of teaching different mathematics in different ways to different groups of students.

– WILLIAM THOMAS

  • All mathematics is someone's workplace mathematics.

– MARTIN NAHEMOW

ON CORE CURRICULUM
  • A core curriculum must provide multiple entry points for students; schools must maximize the number of options open to students.

– DIANE SPRESSER

  • Students in the academic track will need many of the work-specific skills that students in school-to-work mathematics learn.

– WILLIAM THOMAS

  • Practical applications can be the stepping stone between fundamentals and theory. They give students a reason for putting forth effort.

– ARLA HUBER



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 19
MATHEMATICAL PREPARATION OF THE TECHNICAL WORK FORCE: REPORT OF A WORKSHOP OBSERVATIONS AND REFLECTIONS Prior to the Workshop, participants were invited to contribute position papers that reflected important issues in technical education that grew out of their own experiences. Many of their ideas coincided with the four major themes discussed in the working groups: Tracking, Core Curriculum, Student Needs, and Articulation. Some of their thoughts are summarized below. ON TRACKING Because of the volatile nature of the workplace and because adolescents ' interests change so dramatically throughout their education, it is a mistake to classify students according to their mathematical skills and aspirations. – CAROLE LACAMPAGNE 65% of high school students express an interest in attending college, 48% actually enroll, 18% eventually get a four-year degree, but only 9% take advanced mathematics courses in college. – MARTIN NAHEMOW We need to consider the consequences of teaching different mathematics in different ways to different groups of students. – WILLIAM THOMAS All mathematics is someone's workplace mathematics. – MARTIN NAHEMOW ON CORE CURRICULUM A core curriculum must provide multiple entry points for students; schools must maximize the number of options open to students. – DIANE SPRESSER Students in the academic track will need many of the work-specific skills that students in school-to-work mathematics learn. – WILLIAM THOMAS Practical applications can be the stepping stone between fundamentals and theory. They give students a reason for putting forth effort. – ARLA HUBER

OCR for page 19
MATHEMATICAL PREPARATION OF THE TECHNICAL WORK FORCE: REPORT OF A WORKSHOP Mathematical techniques must be distinguished from mathematical concepts, number facts from number sense, and algorithmic learning from mathematical modelling. – PAMELA MATTHEWS Seldom does one hear a call for more factoring skills or more time learning how to add fractions, yet these skills are still being emphasized in many colleges. – ELIZABETH TELES ON STUDENT NEEDS Millions of jobs exist today that did not exist when the people who hold them were in school. – CAROLE LACAMPAGNE The new AMATYC Standards propose for technical programs a rich, hands-on, technology-based, applications-driven curriculum. – SUSAN WOOD In today's world the application of knowledge is as essential as the attainment of it. – PAMELA MATTHEWS Students thrive in courses where concepts are presented in close proximity to their intended use. – PATRICK MCCRAY ON ARTICULATION Technical mathematics courses need to be structured so they will fit into the requirements of related baccalaureate majors. – THERESE JONES Students should learn three things simultaneously: academic disciplines, career awareness, and workplace know-how. – ARNOLD PACKER The NCTM process standards (problem-solving, reasoning, communication, and connections) are likely to be strongly echoed in the standards being developed for other subject areas. – JOSEPH ROSENSTEIN It is important that I communicate with the vocational and technology teachers in our building so that I can show my students how the mathematics and physics concepts learned in my class become tools to be used in their technology classes. – JEAN SIMCIC