Collaborative Solutions in Calculus
Researchers: Mako Haruta, Larissa Schroeder.
What effect does a highly interactive and collaborative community environment have on students who work together to co-write and co-edit formal written solutions for Calculus I problems? This study investigates the potential for change in students’ understanding of Calculus I and in their ability to write mathematics.
The Mathematics Department at the University of Hartford created a collection of in-class problem sets that are part of the used in flipped calculus classes. The development of these curricular materials was supported by the National Science Foundation grant Flipping Calculus (NSF #). However, a complete set of solutions has not yet been developed for these materials.
Students who have completed Calculus I, at various ability levels, work collaboratively to create solution sets for the Flipping Calculus curricular materials. The research for this project centers on the effect of this collaborative work on student understanding of Calculus.
There are two research questions associated with this study:
RQ1: What effect did participation in this project have on students’ understanding of calculus concepts?
RQ2: What effect did participation in this project have on students’ ability to articulate and structure mathematical arguments?
Ultimately, if collaboratively writing solutions has a positive effect on students understanding of calculus and their ability to structure mathematical arguments, this study will serve as a pilot project to guide our exploration of how to extend this type of activity into the mainstream mathematics classroom.