The Problems with Plagiarism

by on January 2, 2013 in Reflections with No Comments »


plagiari1-450x337Introduction

Plagiarism is the most serious offense in academia. Its definition—the undocumented use of another person’s work—is straightforward, and its maximum sentences for an offense are draconian: expulsion for students, termination for professors. If the stakes are so high, why would anyone risk plagiarizing another person’s work?

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How to Boost Self-Confidence in Mathematics

by on October 16, 2012 in Reflections with No Comments »


Introduction

Many recent high school graduates are experiencing certain difficulties in dealing with college undergraduate mathematics. A lot of researchers on students in college performance reveal that many first-year students are coming underprepared for college life and are frequently frustrated by sequential failure in remedial math sequence and drop out of college. “For some, it may be that their confidence has been severely dented by someone who taught them maths [sic] in a forceful or unsympathetic manner, so that they came to believe that they were ‘no good at maths [sic]’” (Fewings, 2011).

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Be Your Own Superhero: Grade-Saving Strategies

by on July 12, 2012 in Reflections with No Comments »


Students often find themselves on the verge of flunking a class, and having already lost the option to withdraw, the realization of the situation  produces a panic that becomes debilitating.  As a result, some students succumb to the frenzy and allow the rest of their semester to crash and burn.

Instead, “Keep calm and carry on”, as states the recently commercialized British government slogan.  Don’t wave the white flag and don’t call off the troops. There’s still time to save your grade!

The following grade-saving strategies will help you make the most of the remaining semester:

1. Reach out to professors

Communicating with professors is an excellent grade-saving strategy. It’s never too late to speak to the instructor. Express your desire to improve your current standing and find out exactly what is expected of you.   Professors are usually willing to work something out if you show that you’re serious and motivated.  You can haggle for some extra credit, extensions on deadlines, and resubmissions for higher marks.

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Fraction Myth Debunked

by on June 29, 2012 in Reflections with No Comments »


Introduction

The hottest discussion topic among mathematic educators within Metropolitan College of New York revolves around the idea of what mathematic skills our students should have. The biggest concern arises when students face failure with fraction concepts. The advancement from secondary to post-secondary education demands that students should have already mastered these skills in elementary school and demonstrated computational proficiency during the Accuplacer entry examination. However, newly admitted and even some continuing students continue to struggle with concepts of fraction addition and fraction subtraction. So, many students believe that mastery of fraction skills will never be achieved. This belief is a myth.
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Math Phobia

by on April 18, 2012 in Reflections with 1 Comment »


Introduction

Math is the most feared subject in the American school system. Students ranging from lower-level to college-level seem to dread the subject.

Math phobia is serious issue in America, and many cartoonists and other individuals seem to communicate the issue in funny cartoons to remind us continuously that it’s not an individual problem but the entire county’s problem. The more people become aware of widespread math phobia, the more likely that they will take the necessary steps collectively to address it.

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To Go or Not To Go (to college)?
That is the question

by on April 3, 2012 in Reflections with No Comments »


A recent article in the Chronicle of Higher Education about two sisters with divergent academic paths has made me think about the question “What is the point of attending college?” Is the answer: to acquire a wealth of knowledge about a variety of topics that scholars and administrators have determined are worth exploring? To meet eager and like-minded learners with whom you will mesh on a personal and intellectual level and start the Next Great Company? Or is it to obtain a certificate that by its sheer existence proves you are qualified for a higher position—and thus a higher paycheck—at your current job?

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Learn the Rules to Break Them!
(except in this case)

by on March 29, 2012 in Reflections with No Comments »


Sometimes as teachers, we pull from our ever-expanding bag of tricks all sorts of odds and ends that we hope can catalyze a student’s comprehension, inquiry or motivation. These tools can be nuanced, direct, or bluntly manipulative. The weirdest such oddity I recently “pulled out” was in an APA workshop for a CA class: I actually found myself telling students to refer to the MCNY APA guide as their holy text while students here. How corny. What’s worse, I repeated the same line in three such workshops.

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Teaching an Old Dog New Tricks

by on January 20, 2012 in Reflections with No Comments »


A considerable amount of the students at MCNY are “adult learners”. While 18-25 year olds are adults, this term specifically refers to adults ages 35+. REAL adults. Adults with much more life experience then the average college student.
Adult Learners come here for our accelerated degree programs. The promise of a degree in a shortened time period is very attractive to the AL who feels that they have already lost some time.
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