Open-Access Clicker Question Bank for Numerical Analysis

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Author: Menz, Petra
This project involves the creation of a databank of clicker questions that will supplement the instruction of an upper-level undergraduate mathematics course at SFU. These questions can be posed to students throughout lectures, facilitating student engagement and helping to identify gaps in knowledge and proficiency. This project fills a need for upper-level undergraduate mathematics clicker questions at SFU.
We proposed to create a clicker question bank for a third-year undergraduate course in numerical analysis (MACM 316). The purpose of this question bank is three-fold. First, we aimed to better engage students in the MACM 316 classroom. This course is taught mostly in a lecture style and many students struggle with the material. We believed that providing the students with some opportunity for more active interaction in lectures will go a long way towards keeping their attention, engaging them more with the material, and encouraging them to reflect more deeply on important concepts. Secondly, we wanted to gauge students’ understanding of prerequisite material as well as determining which new concepts introduced in lecture require further explanation. To this end, we aimed to focus on developing two types of questions: “warm-ups” that focus on prerequisite material and are given at the start of class; and deeper concept tests that attempt to measure how well ideas just presented in lecture have been assimilated. Thirdly, having such a well-designed and comprehensive bank of questions that is openly accessible should (we hope) also encourage other instructors at SFU and elsewhere to implement them in their lectures.
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