The Teaching of Mathematics

Mathematics G8000
Prof. Michael Thaddeus
Spring 2017

January 17: Overview.

January 24: Course design and policy, including homework.
Assignment: Make a syllabus for a fictitious calculus course. Put your name at the top. Bring 11 copies to class. Be prepared to justify your choices of the number and dates of exams, grading policy, etc.

January 31: Constructing and grading exams.
Assignment: Make a 75-minute midterm exam for a fictitious calculus course. Put your name at the top. Bring 11 copies to class. Again, be prepared to justify your choice of questions. Also grade, in red ink, the sample exams I will hand out the week before.

February 7: Attending to individual students ‐ academic or personal problems, disabilities, advice, recommendations, discipline, etc.
Assignment: Write a brief (200-250 word) letter of recommendation for a fictitious calculus student applying for a summer internship with an investment bank. Again, put your name at the top. Bring 11 copies to class.

February 14: Teaching in the classroom.
Assignment: Attend any calculus lecture at Columbia and make a list of three good aspects and three bad aspects of the instructor's presentation. Bring it to class.

February 21 -- May 2: 25-minute lectures by students.
Assignment: Prepare a 25-minute lecture on a topic from Stewart's Calculus and deliver it to the class. Bring a copy of your lecture notes and hand them in before beginning your lecture. Be prepared to discuss and criticize other students' lectures helpfully.

Attendance at all classes is required and will strongly affect your grade. More than three unexcused absences will result in automatically failing the course.

Assignments must represent your own personal work and must be written up in your own words, not copied from others or from an online source. However, you are welcome to discuss the assignments with other students, and to draw on the online resources linked from the course home page.

Some helpful links

Teaching pages and sample syllabi of:
Akram Alishahi
Ali Altug
Anand Deopurkar
BoGwang Jeon
Johan de Jong
Chao Li
Robert Lipshitz
Eric Urban

Departmental teaching resources:
Departmental teaching guide (requires department username and password)
Calculus courses information page (with links to official sample syllabi)

University teaching resources:
GSAS teaching center

Other teaching resources:
A handbook for mathematics teaching assistants from the Mathematical Association of America
The 2017 Alternate Side Parking Suspension Calendar

University grading policies: CC, BC, SEAS, GS, SPS

How to set up a web site through the Department or the University

Culpa (underground reviews of Columbia instructors)

Homework cheating websites: Chegg, Slader, Wolfram Alpha

Resources for improving your command of English:
Community Language Program at Teachers College
American Language Program at Columbia
Language Maintenance Tutorials at Columbia