Elementary Algebra: Graphs and Authentic Applications

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9780132201643: Elementary Algebra: Graphs and Authentic Applications
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Jay Lehmann is passionate about answering the question so many math instructors hear their students ask:  But what is this good for?  He discovered that a curve fitting approach could enable students to see how math is used in all walks of life with current, compelling, and authentic situations.  In addition to curve fitting, Lehmann's approach includes other types of meaningful modeling, directed-discovery explorations, conceptual questions, labs, and of course, a large bank of skill problems.  The curve fitting applications serve as a portal for students to see the usefulness of mathematics so that they become fully engaged in the class. Once involved, they are more receptive to all aspects of the course.

 

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About the Author:

Jay Lehmann has taught for the past 25 years at College of San Mateo, where he received the “shiny apple award” for excellence in teaching.  He has presented at over 80 conferences including AMATYC and ICTCM over the past 16 years. Jay is currently the newsletter editor for California Mathematics Council, Community Colleges (CMC3).  Still young at heart, he plays in a rock band appropriately named the Procrastinistas.  Jay has authored several algebra textbooks published by Pearson and is has also recently completed a Prestatistics textbook.


 

In the words of the author:

Before writing my algebra series, it was painfully apparent that my students couldn't relate to the applications in the course. I was plagued with the question, "What is this good for?" To try to bridge that gap, I wrote some labs, which facilitated my students in collecting data, finding models via curve fitting, and using the models to make estimates and predictions. My students really loved working with the current, compelling, and authentic data and experiencing how mathematics truly is useful.


My students' response was so strong that I decided to write an algebra series. Little did I know that to realize this goal, I would need to embark on a 15-year challenging journey, but the rewards of hearing such excitement from students and faculty across the country have made it all worthwhile! I'm proud to have played even a small role in raising people’s respect and enthusiasm for mathematics.


I have tried to honor my inspiration: by working with authentic data, students can experience the power of mathematics. A random-sample study at my college suggests that I am achieving this goal. The study concludes that students who used my series were more likely to feel that mathematics would be useful in their lives (P-value 0.0061) as well as their careers (P-value 0.024).


The series is excellent preparation for subsequent courses; in particular, because of the curve fitting and emphasis on interpreting the contextual meaning of parameters, it is an ideal primer for statistics. In addition to curve fitting, my approach includes other types of meaningful modeling, directed-discovery explorations, conceptual questions, and of course, a large bank of skill problems. The curve-fitting applications serve as a portal for students to see the usefulness of mathematics so that they become fully engaged in the class. Once involved, they are more receptive to all aspects of the course.

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9780134756998: Elementary Algebra: Graphs and Authentic Applications (3rd Edition) (What's New in Developmental Math)

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