QS Module Showcase (works in progress)

WELCOME to the LACOL Quantitative Skills (QS) Module Showcase.  Browse the module prototypes below.

Background: The LACOL Quantitative Skills working group is collaborating to develop a shared library of online modules that can help support students in their quantitative work across the disciplines. Module design combines instructional content (curated resources such as videos or simulations) with a sequence of activities and assessments that provide students with the institutional and curricular context.  A major goal of the project is to evaluate the effectiveness of modules in different settings, either as stand-alone resources or embedded within coursework or a QS/QR mentoring program.  Because the focus is on application of math skills in context, the team is seeking input from instructors across the disciplines.

Prototypes under development:

Number Sense: Fermi Estimation
Graphing: Deciding on a graph type
Algebra: Linear Functions (CUBE example)
Algebra: Strategies for Solving Word Problems

 

Number Sense

LACOL_MKNumber Sense:
Estimating Large Numbers
Module Purpose: Students practice translating a word problem into mathematical relationships, learning a process of arriving at a reasonable answer, becoming proficient in estimating quantities and making assumptions and in appreciating order of magnitude knowledge. The word problem presented is often referred to as a Fermi problem, named after physicist Enrico Fermi as he was known for his ability to make good approximate calculations with little or no actual data. The ability to estimate quantities is a useful skill in many disciplines, and a student may be called on to apply it in settings ranging from estimating the required amounts of reagents to estimating the economic feasibility of setting up a bakery in Northfield, MN.

Notes on Strategy: The module breaks down the strategy of arriving at an answer to an estimation question (Fermi Problem) as follows:

  1. Brainstorm questions that arise from the original question
  2. Identify the central information that is needed
  3. Set up the chain of reasoning reasoning / mathematical relationship between the quantities
  4. Make assumptions about the quantities involved or gathering information needed to improve estimates.
  5. Work with your smallest reasonable value, your largest, reasonable value, and then choose the most likely value for the answer.

Keywords: 

  • Fermi problem
  • Back of the envelope calculations
  • Guesstimations
  • Order of magnitude
  • Dimensional analysis
Module Prototype: Approximately how many dentists are there in Fresno, CA?

ENTER THE FERMI MODULE


Graphing

LACOL_MKGraphing:
Deciding on a graph type
Module Purpose: Students

Notes on Strategy: The module breaks down the strategy of arriving at an answer as follows:

  1. Brainstorm questions that arise from the original question
  2. Identify the central information that is needed
  3. Set up the chain of reasoning reasoning / mathematical relationship between the quantities
Module Prototype: Choosing a graph type

ENTER THE GRAPHING MODULE


Algebra

LACOL_MKAlgebra:
Linear Functions
Module Purpose: This module reviews linear functions, their graphical representations, and fitting data with linear functions. You can watch instructional videos that provide an introduction to functions, average rate of change, and linear regression & data analysis. Then you’ll be asked to apply these topics to a problem exploring the Keeling curve, which describes the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Notes on Strategy: The module breaks down the strategy as follows:

  1. Knowledge Pre-check
  2. Instructional Videos
  3. Institutional Context
  4. Application Problem
  5. Post Check
Module Prototype: Linear Functions

As you enter, click the ‘GUEST ACCESS’ button to see this module in Moodle.

ENTER THE LINEAR FUNCTIONS MODULE


LACOL_MKAlgebra:
Strategies for Solving Word Problems
Module Purpose: Students …

Notes on Strategy: :

  1. Brainstorm questions that arise from the original question
  2. Identify the central information that is needed
  3. Set up the chain of reasoning reasoning / mathematical relationship between the quantities
Module Prototype: Strategies for solving word problem

MODULE COMING SOON