Math 589: Teaching and Presentation of Mathematics 

INSTRUCTOR: Professor Brooke Shipley, SEO 312 or 508, 

CLASS MEETINGS: Tuesday 2pm - 3:45pm, in AH 306 


OFFICE HOURS: Monday at 12pm, Friday at 2pm in SEO 312; or by appointment (right before or after class is also a good time for questions) 

COURSE OBJECTIVES: The goal of this two credit hour course is to aid MSCS teaching assistants in developing teaching skills and methods. The course also addresses problems that may arise in the classroom and offers insights and mentoring for a successful graduate career. 

GRADING POLICY: Attendance 20%, Participation 40%, Assignments and Presentations 40%. You are expected to attend all of the class meetings and actively participate; permission for a non-emergency class absence must be requested in advance. 

ATTENDANCE POLICY: Each student is allowed one absence and two late arrivals for personal reasons. After that each unexcused absence results in losing 5% of your total grade and each late arrival results in losing 2% of your total grade. Excused absences must be arranged ahead of time, except in case of emergencies.  

DISABILITY ACCOMMODATIONS: Students with disabilities who require accommodations for full access and participation in UIC Programs must be registered with the Disability Resource Center (DRC). Please contact DRC at (312) 413-2183 (voice) or (312) 413- 0123 (TDD). 

COURSE BOOK: "Teaching Mathematics in Colleges and Universities: Case Studies for Today's Classroom," by Solomon Friedberg et al. available at the AMS Bookstore among other places. 

COURSE TOPICS:  Teaching Skills and Methods: Active learning, group work, listening to students, pacing your presentation, giving and receiving constructive criticism  Course Mechanics: Using TeX to write a quiz or worksheet, evaluation and grading, dealing with cheating, course evaluations, meeting with supervisors  Graduate Career: Preparing a CV, web page, teaching portfolio, and seminar talk; applying for fellowships, master's exam, choosing an advisor, professional society memberships, employment opportunities, thesis research, balancing roles as student and TA 

OTHER COURSE ACTIVITIES: Teaching presentations by each class member; discussions of classroom case studies from Teaching Mathematics in Colleges and Universities: Case Studies for Today's Classroom, by Solomon Friedberg et al; observations of other teachers

TA RESOURCES: MSCS Graduate Studies and TA Handbook 

Assignment for visiting senior TAs due September 20.

TAC Observation Form  for your reference.

September 20: Assignment due on the day your group gives a presentation. Visit each other's discussion sections. Additional questions to consider while watching a discussion session: TA evaluation form.

For October: Three assignments for your graduate career. Due November 1; I recommend completing one per week (and you have a couple weeks to spare.)
Some useful guidance about creating a website and a CV is available here, starting at page 7.

1) Write a CV in TeX. Send your TeX file to me by email. Either send a PDF file of your CV also by email, or hand this in on paper.
Many examples of TeX files which can be modified to write your CV are available here.
2) Write either a quiz or a worksheet for your class (at least 3 problems, possibly using TeX, possibly not, for a student to turn in - so put a space for a name and leave space for the student to work the problems.) Hand this in on paper, or send a PDF by email.
Many examples of TeX files which can be modified to create a quiz are available here.
3) Create your own website. Once it is done, send me a link to your website in an email.
A tutorial for how to create a website is available here. Bring your questions about this on TBA. (On a date to be announced we'll have time in class to work on websites, so bring a laptop if you can.)

November 1: CV, worksheet, website due.

November 8: Some teaching portfolio guidance is here.

Make-up assignment: (This assignment is only required if you would like to make up for being gone for an extra unexcused absence. The first one is free. This can also be used to make up for points on other assignments.) Complete exercises 1 through 5 in the first 3 pages of this AMS notices article. These exercises are the beginning of writing a teaching statement and a way to think carefully about your own teaching. I expect this make-up assignment to take two to four hours to complete. It is due by December 1 for full credit.

November 22:Class will be held.

November 29: Class will be held.

Extra reading and references:

For future reference a good resource for applying for jobs: here.

Classroom activities for active learning 4 pages long.

Student engagement strategies 1 page.

For class sometime soon. 4 pages long.