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To address difficulties students have in simultaneously assimilating and organizing material, I have been using a new lecture structure for our mathematics for business and social sciences sequence (calculus I, calculus II, and basic statistics). Before each class I posted lecture outlines as in this example, which would then be presented in a powerpoint format during class as in this corresponding example. The powerpoint format is mimicked by PDF files produced using the PPower4 LaTex post-processing package. The outlines state examples but do not work them out. I work out the examples on the chalkboard, spending most of class time in this more traditional problem-working mode. By giving students the logical framework for the lecture ahead of time, students are better able to focus on the critical task of following the examples during class.

This format was motivated by my experience in teaching this class previously, where in one-on-one discussions with students I found that even those who actively participated during class time would have poorly structured and sometimes incorrect notes. Inspirational credit goes to Jeremy Wolfe, who structured his introductory cognitive science class at MIT in a similar way. You may download .tar files containing the lectures (for projecting) and the notes (for posting), both as PDF files and the LaTex source, below. Some colleagues and graduate students have simply used the notes to help prepare their own lectures.

Final additional note: when I teach calculus II this year I will be trying out some Excel projects developed by my colleague Marie Vitulli, which should also help to make the material more immediate.

Calculus for business and social sciences, I:

Notes (PDF)   Notes (LaTex)   Lectures (PDF)   Lectures (LaTex)

Calculus for business and social sciences, II:

Notes (PDF)   Notes (LaTex)   Lectures (PDF)   Lectures (LaTex)

Elementary statistics:

Notes (PDF)   Notes (LaTex)   Lectures (PDF)   Lectures (LaTex)