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Wednesday, 19 December 2007
Meeting with John Mason
Mood:  a-ok
Topic: Meetings

So John and I met for lunch on Thursday last week together with Safiya (??) to talk a bit about my work. So, carried along my preliminary analysis to see if he has any ideas and whether he can point me in some direction and he has given me some leads.

 He indicated he was interested in the relationships, details and properties of problems (i.e. these are the things that students are looking for - or rather when a student sees a problem this is what they try to do particularly when there is an example which they can follow).

John suggested that I look at how the students see the worked examples and how they compare what they have in their problem to the worked example. Also, check and see what they're saying or looking at to check whether their worked example mirrors their own problem.

John suggested I look at what the students are doing when watching the screen or problem - that is check their sense making (i.e. levels of sense-making - this is way the relationships, properties and details come in). Suggested I look at the times when the students are gazing, when they're going between things (on the screen, the paper etc.) and when there is a language shift such as "This is like" to things like "this is an example of". Reckon the students who are sense-making more are the deep explainers and better students.

Connected to this, he suggested check and see which group looks at the materials and who don't and check these against their claims of confidence in mathematics (can't remember why exactly - but reckon because these will be sense-making more or perhaps students who are not confident will check the paper more often?).

With respect to the relationships, details and properties ... students would gaze at the problem as a whole and then should start looking the details and they then look at the relationships which are related to the properties of the problem. Ok - think I've sort of lost this thread of thought - I perhaps got to get John's paper on this and see how he explains it exactly - hopefully this is his research when he was talking about it.

He also mention some guy call Sen Campbell at Simon Fraser University was setting up a lab for eye-tracking and testing ECG for students doing maths and science (wants to check their anxiety etc.) - sounds interesting might check him out.


Posted by prejudice at 9:46 AM GMT
Wednesday, 13 September 2006
Meeting with Peter Galbraith
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: Satrangi Re (Dil Se)
Topic: Meetings

After Peter contacted me through this blog (I knew this blog was good for something!) - I arranged to meet him in London on Friday. It was great meeting with him and chatting with him.  

He suggested a few papers that I could read including one by Ramsden on technology use by chemistry students (have it written down on my notepad but left my notes at home), also a literature paper by Michelle Artigue which summarizes their work in Paris on CAS and mathematics.

He also suggested looking at Diana Mackie's (??) work - there should be paper in the last ICTM. He indicated that I should contact Diana and also Chris Haines about a group on tertiary maths education that exists in the UK - so, I have to do that.

He also clarified how, he and Chris Haines created the mechanical, constructive and interpretive problems - which I thought was useful. I told him about the current work I'm doing using the maths-computing inventory and told him I would keep him and Pat informed.

It was a really good meeting all the way around. Enjoyed meeting and talking to him immensely.


Posted by prejudice at 10:00 AM BST
Updated: Wednesday, 13 September 2006 11:16 AM BST
Monday, 26 June 2006
Critical Reader
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: My Eyes Can Only See As Far As You (Charley Pride)
Topic: Meetings
So, Hossein Z. just came into my office and showed me my probation report and asked me if I sent it to him, and I said probably Anne F. did, and then he asked me do I know why she would have sent that to him .. and I looked a bit confused and said "Didn't James asked you to be a critical reader?" ... and then he said oh yes but that was such a long time ago.

So, then he asked me if there was anything I wanted him to look at in particular (and then my mind went blank - I was like a deer caught in the headlights - I had no clue!) - so then, told him perhaps my methodology (because I thought that seem reasonable and it was my weakest chapter)... and then he asks me what in my methodology (well he got me there!) - so I said my tasks for linear programming (and I think he was going to say that no one does linear programming but then he taught better of saying that :P) ... and asked me what kind of students it was suppose to be and I said university students and he wanted to know if it was at the OU and I said no it could be students at universities and told me about a LP component he was writing for the business school and asked him if that was BM240 and told him about BM240 ... and I also told him about the tasks I need to create which I have no idea about as yet (its a bit difficult to explain something where I don't even know what his frame of reference is i.e. where I should begin) - he looked a bit confused and ask me if it was for data collection and I said yes - I guess my interpretation of methodology was methods :D and his was more theoretical (big problem already!).

Anyway, there goes my first impression to my critical reader - not a very good one ... :D ... hope he doesn't hold it against me. But Rebecca said the least CREET could have done was send a covering letter indicating what it was and what was expected from them. Well ... I thought that would have been standard operating procedure because how do they know how to be a critical reader?

Posted by prejudice at 11:56 AM BST
Friday, 23 June 2006
Supervision meeting
Mood:  bright
Now Playing: Wild Child (Enya)
Topic: Meetings
Yesterday afternoon I had my supervision meeting, and strangely enough all three of them were there. Now that was surprising since I only expected Doug and James.

Anyway, we got to talking about how to developed the mathematical tasks to see what occurs when using the black-box and white-box software. I told them, I had spoken to Jonathan and he had suggested checking for the strategies that student's may employed. James was all so pleased to hear this, he was going to say something I imagine on strategies but I pre-empted him because he was saying probably it might not be sufficient just to check and see if students get these tasks right or wrong ... so just jumped straight in and told him about the strategies.

So, told them about the article I was reading by Artigue (2003) about the profiling of strategies she spoked off by a doctoral student. There are five profiles that a student may undertake when using software and mathematics. These profiles were theorist (references, interpretation and analogy), rationalist (paper&pen, inference and proof), scholastic, tinkerer (calculator, investigation and accumulation) and experimentalist. Got to find the original work by Trouche (2000) to further understand these profiles. But thought these might something be good to look at - although James suggested I could develop and determine my own strategies.

I was also reading a paper by Galbraith (2002) this morning and there is also a profiling of attitudes of students towards technology and he reported on some of these - originally done by Goos et al (2000) - I've got to find that paper. There is four: technology is considered as the master, servant, partner and extension of yourself. Like this idea as well but think it is two different approaches need to see how they can be combined.
(Anyway got to go now - its my birthday and meeting Tina in 6 mins - got to run!)

Posted by prejudice at 11:36 AM BST
Monday, 20 February 2006
Meeting with James
Mood:  down
Now Playing: Ain't That a Shame (Fats Domino)
Topic: Meetings
I met up with James the week before Friday (10th Feb) and was supposed to write up some of the stuff he told me here or either in meeting notes and I didn't get around to it - and I felt bad I hadn't done it ... I've fallen and hopefully I don't continue to fall with this procrastination attitude - and I feel a bit dejected about that - and also was suppose to do some of my literature work - and haven't gotten around to it as yet - and that is making me more dejected!

Anyway, onto my meeting with James, we had a pretty long talk for about 1 hr and a half - and it did make me feel good whilst I was talking to him. He told me about the upcoming BSRLM conference in Warwick and asked me to have a look at it (I did - but didn't see anything that was really that interesting). Anyway, he said to look around at other conferences that might focus on engineering or business education.

He told me it might be good to check out the work of Paul Brna who was at Leeds (just checked he is now in Glasgow) and who did work on computer-based learning (as it was known then - I think) - and suggested I look at a good review paper of his work perhaps (through citations).

James also suggested making some contacts with people in PLAC, FELS, Maths particularly CME and KMI. I was supposed to go to a seminar on maths at the KMI podium but didn't attend because it clashed with my induction day and couldn't find the KMI podium when I did decide to slip out and go.

James thought it might be a good idea to interview some of the associate lecturers that were associated with the M373 and BM240 classes to see what the classic difficulties of LP were in particular with the use of the software. He suggested I started with the course chair who might refer me to the staff tutors and they will refer me to the associate lecturers. The staff tutors (if the course is large!) are the people who recruit the associate lecturers and I won't have any problem with the SRPP if I want to talk to them - at least that's what James said.

He also thought that the MSc dissertation - there could be a possible journal paper in that - and I should try and convince John to help me write it. I will need to have more reference to the literature and be clear about it and also recent literature.

James thought it was also useful that I interview the students when they did their project in March - however, I thought they were doing a project using linear programming only - as it turns out it could be any operations research technique! Anyway, I've 4 interviews lined up for mid-march to see what the students did - and hopefully at least on of them did linear programming.

Posted by prejudice at 10:42 AM GMT
Updated: Monday, 20 February 2006 10:45 AM GMT
Wednesday, 23 November 2005
Met with James in the corridor
Mood:  hug me
Now Playing: I'm a Believer (The Monkees)
Topic: Meetings
So, just met James in the corridor and we were discussing the BSRLM conference and I told him although it was ok, I didn't think it was that useful. He suggested that sometime in future I should make a trip down to Bristol, since they are doing some interesting things there albeit all in schools!

Anyway, he said it will be good to dip into looking at conversation analysis (I told him I thought it looked hard :) ) - but he said I should still look at it, particularly look at Diane Laurillard book since she speaks about a framework for comparing software uses in difference disciplines (at least I think so) and if that gets more interesting to look at the work of the original developer Harvey Sacks.

So, will have to do that .. thought Gill had the book but couldn't find it on her shelf so may have to get it from the library.

Posted by prejudice at 3:29 PM GMT
Thursday, 26 May 2005
Informal meeting about Lit Review
Mood:  cool
Now Playing: The Loco-motion (Little Eva)
Topic: Meetings
So, had a meeting with James this morning in the refectory - supposingly about my lit review. But we never really got to around to it properly. I knew it was bad - and I told him so - and he says he thinks that I knew where I did badly. And that is the truth I do know. But he suggested I speak to John in relation to ATI and ASI with respect to disciplines to help focus my arguments better.

As for the data analysis of the data I'm collected - we are not entirely sure how to go about that - we reckon for the ATI and ASI (if I do get that off) - we'll just follow the analysis method of John - i.e. factor analysis since he obviously knows what he is doing. I explained to James that I am not so confident with factor analysis, and he suggested that I have a talk with John about that too and invite him along to the meeting - since it will be good for him to learn about that too. So, that should be good - if I can get a hold of John.

James also suggested looking at intermediate steps in CAS particularly in calculus such as differential equations, integrals etc. and numerical solutions. He said he would try and get some papers and direct them to me. We'll see how that goes. Also, mention that there might be different types of black boxes - not certain what that is - but got to find that out too.

I was telling James that I've not given a reason why I have chosen linear programming - and I say probably one of the strongest reasons is that because it is taught in different disciplines. Then, James brought up an interesting point - why will one want to study different disciplines? There must be a reason - are there different ways of learning in different disciplines or do students learn the same way no matter what discipline they are in??? These are somethings quite interesting. Or are teaching very different in disciplines?? Now, this can be the impetus for checking the ATIs for the different disciplines. So, got to find lit for that to see if my hypothesis is right :).

Posted by prejudice at 4:17 PM BST
Monday, 17 January 2005
Coffee Meeting with James
Mood:  down
Now Playing: Aankhen khuli ho ya ho band (Mohabbatein)
Topic: Meetings

Just had an impromptu meeting with James. He came by to drop a paper for me, and I reminded him we were suppose to be having a coffee this week ... and then has asked me if I was free right now ... and I said yes ... but ... it was a disastrous meeting ... because I had no clue what to speak about ... so, pretty much we were sitting just mumbling stuff ... absolutely nothing constructive.

I have to do something to redeem myself ... but I don't know what!!! But I hate thinking about redeeming myself ... because I do that with Pun, and that does not get me anywhere ... so probably I should forget it and move on, and do the best I can with my work - because I will just get bogged down. I have to start timetabling my work again ... but I have a feeling I have a procrastination attitude again which I have to get rid off ... if I expect to make this year productive! Oh I making myself feel depressed and frustrated.

Anyway, the paper seems ok ... since it has linear programming in its title ... and it looks to be an experiment ... but its the formulation of LP problems ... so at least I would learn some methodology. James also said he uses the ISI Web of Knowledge ... I have to check that out in future ... it might prove to be more useful than checking each database individually - at least I think it search more than the average database. He says I should check conference proceedings since they are also more up-to-date. Supposingly, they have a link to conference proceedings so need to check that out. Also, said I should check out ERIC ... will have to do that.

I told James ... I might feel better if I get a research question ... and I believe that ... so have to think about that this week ... seriously!! Anyway, I'm going back to my statistics.


Posted by prejudice at 4:31 PM GMT
Updated: Monday, 17 January 2005 4:43 PM GMT

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