College Math Teaching

August 11, 2016

Post Promotion Summer

Filed under: editorial, topology — Tags: — collegemathteaching @ 12:02 am

This is my first “terminal promotion” summer. And while I have something that I have “sort of” written up…I just don’t like the result; it basically fills in some gaps in a survey article. But I think that my thinking about this article has lead me to something that I can add to the paper so that I’ll actually LIKE what I submit.

Then again, my quandary can be summed up in this tweet:


If I wait until I am absolutely in love with my work before I send it out, it will never get sent out.

Hopefully, I’ll have more material to add to this blog this semester.

What I am working on: equivalence classes of simple closed curves; these are one to one, continuous images of the unit circle in 3-space. The objects that I am studying are so pathological that these curves fail to have a tangent at ANY point. One of these beasts can be constructed by taking the intersection of these nested, solid tori.



May 4, 2015

Teaching evaluations ….

Filed under: academia, editorial — Tags: , , — collegemathteaching @ 4:48 pm

When I was in grade school, I was evaluated by people with undergraduate degrees.
When I was in high school, I was evaluated by people with undergraduate degrees, and occasionally by someone with a masters degree.
When I was an undergraduate, I was evaluated by Ph. D. holders and an occasional masters degree holder.
When I was a graduate student, Ph. D’s with impressive research credentials evaluated me. a college professor…I am evaluated by those with high school diplomas ….things have come full circle, huh? 🙂

In all honesty, at least my department does “peer classroom visits” at least with non-tenured faculty, and on occasion, with some tenured faculty (the latter is mostly voluntary).

October 1, 2013

I’ve lost any reason to live…

Filed under: student learning — Tags: , — collegemathteaching @ 7:45 pm

Today, I was grading differential equation papers. Some were really good, others were not in that category.

A calculus 2 student came in (we teach techniques of integration, applications of integration, and infinite series).

She, in a very polite manner, complained that the course was. too. easy.

Too. Easy.

I wish that I drank.

But there is no denying it: we have strong freshmen and some very weak, “take the class multiple times” students in the same class, and heaven help you if your flunk out rate is too high.
I might encourage her to take her complaint to the dean and put it in writing.


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