Is It Always Sixteen?

by Herb Brown
Department of Mathematics
University at Albany-SUNY

We use computerized classrooms to teach a variety of undergraduate courses ranging from calculus to advanced upper division algebra and analysis. Each student in these courses has access to a computer and the Computer Algebra System Maple at all times. Maple's use in these courses becomes an integral part of their undergraduate experience. They learn to interact in real time with their computer, with the instructor's computer, with the instructor at the whiteboard and with fellow students. It is an exciting environment that has not only changed the way we teach mathematics but also the way students learn mathematics. Maple is powerful yet user-friendly and provides each student with the symbolic, graphic and analytic tools that are usually too difficult to present in the ordinary classroom. It is an effective teaching/learning tool that frees students from performing rote processes and inspires moments of mathematical discovery. My presentation will illustrate one such moment from a calculus course.