UAM again

[Note: following advice from a friend who possesses more common sense than I do, I’ve removed my initial reaction to the anti-mockery article. I think there’s a different case from the usual one to be made in favour of sharing (some) idiocies; hopefully I’ll be able to make it in a separate post fairly soon…]

There’s recently been an article in the THE (surely the web’s least easily googled publication?) telling us that we shouldn’t mock the idiocies our students come up with under exam conditions. (It’s the second article in the “exchange” here.) The case has already been made that this kind of mockery is one of the few ways of making bulk marking a bearable task. A less widely heard argument is that some of the things students write give the impression of opening a — rather disturbing — window into their thought processes, and that with some of these students this is the sole window available on these processes.

Today’s offering is a single phrase, but one bulging with promise:

… using the linearity of theorems…

I think from context that this means that if, under conditions X, Theorem A states that f(x) = a, while under conditions Y, Theorem B states that f(x) = b, then if both X and Y apply one can conclude that f(x) = a + b. But I may be overlooking some of the full metamathematical power of the principle. Doubtless I’ll become more familiar with it as the years crawl by…

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Teaching, Undergrad. Adv. Math.. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to UAM again

  1. Pingback: From the wrong to the ridiculous | New-cleckit dominie

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s