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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Inquiry-based Learning

(pic via Wikimedia Commons)

Even though I never intended to much address math education when I started this blog, it keeps coming up again and again. With the advent of Khan Academy, education issues that always existed, and were always important, have come to the forefront.
Anyway, an older post from Keith Devlin (very worth reading, especially for its analysis of DNA identification probabilities) referred me to something I was unfamiliar with called "Inquiry-based learning," a form of active or participatory learning that can be applied to most fields (and may be especially effective for science/math teaching), that has apparently been formally around for a good while. The impetus is to get away from the common straight lecture format:

The above is part 1 of 3 parts. The other 2 parts are here:

part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVDfDTmqAuc&feature=channel&list=UL

part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMpNXJyrfSo&feature=BFa&list=ULUVDfDTmqAuc

More (not altogether complementary) information on the referenced mathematician/topologist Robert L. Moore, who popularized this teaching approach (sometimes called the "Moore Method"), is available at Wikipedia here:


There is even an "Academy of Inquiry Based Learning" with a website here:


They also have a Twitter feed: https://twitter.com/iblmath

and a blog: http://theiblblog.blogspot.com/

...Meanwhile, also worth following Keith Devlin's updates on his own venture into teaching a "massive open online course" here:


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