Re: More /.{I->-1} craziness

*To*: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net*Subject*: [mg106635] Re: More /.{I->-1} craziness*From*: Richard Fateman <fateman at cs.berkeley.edu>*Date*: Tue, 19 Jan 2010 05:14:55 -0500 (EST)*References*: <200912300915.EAA17299@smc.vnet.net> <hhhmn8$o9t$1@smc.vnet.net> <hhpl28$9lf$1@smc.vnet.net> <hip8gf$t4d$1@smc.vnet.net> <8304354.1263643340634.JavaMail.root@n11> <hiuur1$919$1@smc.vnet.net> <hj130e$bcn$1@smc.vnet.net>

Do you have any evidence that, taken collectively, the students know more calculus? Can you show that they do better on the final exam than students who haven't used computer systems? Typically the calc teachers I've encountered want to know "what to leave out to make room" for computer stuff. I tell them to leave out Logarithmic Derivatives. Some students like computers because they are neat, and may be enthusiastic about this aspect of the course (though not all...). Maybe it is unimportant that they learn calculus at all, and they should just learn about computers. This would be an important but divisive claim: i.e. calculus is unimportant; we should require that students learn computer skills (Mathematica??) instead. Maybe David Park's point is really somewhere along that spectrum, and we should hold students who learn Mathematica to a lower standard regarding the traditional curriculum. To be clear, I don't object to teaching students about computer algebra systems. I do so when I get a chance (in computer science courses). I just am unaware of evidence that it makes them better calculus students. I don't doubt that a teacher using a computer to do graphics can enliven a calculus class. And even students doing graphics on their own (e.g. TI graphing?) can have fun. But can you show they learn more calculus if they have Mathematica at hand? RJF Helen Read wrote: > > My students come into university level Calculus I or II with no > Mathematica experience, and learn to use it in my calculus class while > learning calculus. ...

**Follow-Ups**:**Re: Re: More /.{I->-1} craziness***From:*Murray Eisenberg <murray@math.umass.edu>