Instructor: Kelly A. MacArthur
Class Time and Place:4:35 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Mondays and Wednesdays in JWB333
Office Hours: Mondays 3:00 -4:00 p.m., Tuesdays 1:00-2:00 p.m,
Fridays 1:00-2:00 p.m. or by appointment.
Office Location: JWB226
Office Phone Number: 581-8341
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Text: Mathematics for High School Teachers: An Advanced Perspective,
by Usiskin, Peressini, Marchisotto, and Stanley.
ISBN # 0-13-044941-5
Prerequisite: Completion, with a grade of C or better, of Math4030
Computer Lab: also in the T. Benny Rushing Mathematics Student Center, Rm 155C.
M – Th 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
F 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Link to computer lab
Grading: The grades will be calculated as follows:
Final Exam 25%
Course Description: This capstone course is offered for
in-service mathematics secondary school teachers and pre-service
teachers nearing completion of their undergraduate program. Its
purpose is to bridge the gap between the undergraduate
mathematics curriculum and the topics and issues that arise in
the secondary school classroom. Those majoring in
mathematics--not mathematics secondary education--should be
aware that this course does not qualify as a "mathematics
elective" because it focuses primarily on topics in mathematics
education. However, undergraduate and graduate students in
mathematics have taken the course in previous semesters and found it rewarding.
Teaching Philosophy: I believe strongly that
mathematics, at its core, is the art/experience/science of
problem solving and pattern recognition. It is inherently a
creative process, one to be struggled with, repeated, and
enjoyed. The process requires imagination, persistence,
courage, processing time, and ultimately produces experiential,
mathematical skill. It is from this perspective that I teach.
I'm not as concerned with the destination, i.e. the answer, as I
am about the journey of problem-solving and mathematical
exploration since it is exactly the entirety of the journey that
creates the answer. And, self-confidence and mastery are then
natural by-products of the mathematical journey.
Projects: Throughout the semester, I will assign 2-3
projects that will be given in addition to your weekly
homework. The projects will be more in-depth problems than
the homework and require more time. These will be discussed more in class.
Homework: The homework will be graded for correctness.
The grade of each homework set will be based on accuracy,
thoughtfulness, completeness and clarity of communication
(i.e. there may be no credit given for answers given without
work shown). You can use these as study tools for the exams.
These homework sets will be due a week or two after assigned.
Since these homewor sets will be given out at random times, it
is your responsibility to show up to class in order to have
current, correct information about these problems and their
due dates. The lowest homework set score will be dropped,
thus late homework sets will NOT be accepted under any
circumstances. To turn in the homework, you will need
to staple your homework together. Collaborating on
homework is allowed, but each student's homework assignment
should be clearly written in his/her own words which leave no
room for interpreting collaboration with cheating or copying.
Online Grades: I will put your grades online on Canvas.
You can get there easily from the main University of Utah
website www.utah.edu. To log in, you use the same student id
and password that you use for Campus Information System. I do
my best to update the grades on a regular basis and keep
everything accurate. However, I would advise you to check
your grades often to make sure there were no data entry
mistakes. I'm always happy to correct any mistakes I've made. You just need to let me know about them.
Calculators: You may find it helpful to have a graphing
calculator for your own personal use. However, if I allow
calculators on exams or quizzes, I will only allow scientific
calculators (no graphing or programmable calculators will be
allowed ever). Most of the time, you will not have use of a
calculator on exams and quizzes. This will be discussed more in class with each quiz and test.
Grading Scale: Although I'm not philosophically
opposed to curving grades, I find it's rarely necessary. The grade scale will be the usual:
A (93-100), A- (90-92), B+ (87-89), B (83-86), B- (80-82), C+ (77-79),
C (73-76), C- (70-72), D+ (67-69), D (63-66), D- (60-62), E (0-59).
If I do need to curve the grades, I will simply shift
everything down by a few points (whatever is necessary).
ADA Statement: The American with Disabilities Act requires that
reasonable accommodations be provided for students with physical,
sensory, cognitive, systemic, learning and psychiatric disabilities.
Any student with a certified disability who needs to arrange
reasonable accommodations must contact the Center for Disabled
Students (CDS) and me at the beginning of the semester to discuss any
such accommodations for the course.
Other Policies: Due to experience, I have decided to make some
additional policies regarding my classroom administration and grading.
- There will be no retakes of exams ever. Your score is
what you get.
- You may take an alternate exam if you talk to me about
it first and explain the extenuating circumstances that
make it necessary. Needing to work, babysitting your
siblings, oversleeping, or needing more time to study do
not pass as acceptable reasons to inconvenience me.
Getting in a car crash or your mother's death, on the
other hand, is sufficient reason to request to take an
alternate exam. But, it is 100% your responsibility to
communicate with me as soon as is possible, before
the exam occurs (or as soon as possible). Talking to
me after the problem will be sufficient reason for
me to allow you to get a zero on that test. I reserve
the right to make alternate exams more difficult than the scheduled exam.
- I will demand respectful behavior in my classroom.
Examples of disrespect include, but are not limited to,
reading a newspaper or magazine in class, social chatting
with your friend in class, text-messaging your buddies
during class or cuddling with your girl/boyfriend in
class. If you choose to be disrespectful during my class,
I can guarantee I will take action to terminate your
disruptive behavior, and that action may not be desirable
- There will be no cursing nor negative ranting (for
example, “math sucks”) on any written work
turned in. The penalty for such things on your written
work will be a zero score on that assignment or test!
- You need to have a valid email address registered
with Campus Information System. I will regularly send
emails to the class and will hold you accountable for
receiving that information. If you have troubles
receiving my weekly emails, you can (1) check to make sure
your email address at Campus Information System is
correct, (2) make sure my emails are not going directly to
your junk mail folder, or (3) contact the webmaster at Campus Information System.
- If you have crisis-level extenuating circumstances
which require flexibility, it is completely your
responsibility to communicate with me as soon as possible.
The longer you wait to communicate with me, the less I can and am willing to do to help.
- If you have questions about any exam/quiz/homework
grade, or you want to appeal the grading of the
exam/quiz/homework, you must bring it to me within one
week of the exam. After that, you will have to live
with whatever grade you got.
- Please make sure you do your best throughout the
semester and come talk to me if you need further study
strategies. I will NOT offer any extra credit at the
end of the semester or any other way for you to improve
your grade at that time. If you ask me toward the
end of the semester if I'll make special arrangements
for you to improve your grade by some means or what else you can do to
improve your grade or give me some long explanation
about how you need this class to go on or graduate or
how a bad grade will adversely affect your life, I will
automatically deduct one percentage point from your
overall grade, just for asking the question!!
Also, I will NOT respond to such emails, unless it is
simply to refer to this note in the syllabus so you'll
know why your grade was just decreased.
- If you cheat on any homework, project, quiz or
exam, I will automatically give you a zero for that
grade. Depending on the severity of the cheating, I
may decide to fail you from the class.
- I reserve the right to change my policies stated in
this syllabus at some point in the semester. If I do make
a change to a policy, I will announce it in class and send
the change in email.