Musings on Teaching Calculus Again

I am teaching calculus again this fall after a few months off from teaching. This will be interesting. Last spring I taught calculus for the first time and it was the first time in a while I had taught a new class. One thing I am looking forward to is redeveloping some of the assessment material. When teaching an online class it is harder and harder to reach out to students and ensure they are learning something constructive.

One of the ways I have addressed this is to develop assessments (think quizzes and tests) that really capture new information. I do this by asking the student to solve a problem. Not only do they have to identify how to resolve the answer mathematically, but they also must set up the problem mathematically. This forces an application and turns away from unfortunate “plug-and-chug” problems. Generally, like to have as few of these as possible.

Image by Chris 73 / Wikimedia Commons.