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Mathematics Education-Trends & Challenges

Period of Event: 
Friday, August 19, 2011 to Sunday, August 21, 2011
Venue: 

University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad

Description: 

 

P R E L U D E

This conference/meeting is intended to invite the attention of the mathematics community concerning the perilous trend that is prevailing in "Mathematics education" and to make a sincere attempt to suggest some remedies. It is planned to bring out a white paper on the present scenario of mathematics education.

As the Prime Minister of India has repeatedly emphasized, a strong foundation in the pure sciences is essential to transform India into a knowledge superpower. Unfortunately an alarmingly low number of students today are making their way up the mathematical echelon to the higher levels of mathematical knowledge. This has led to a talent crunch, seriously impeding the development of the future generation of scientists and teachers.

Adding insult to the injury, there is a growing concern about what students are being taught, as well as how well are they being taught.

Therefore, there appears a crying need to have a thorough, dispassionate, self-introspection among the mathematical community on where and how the Indian mathematics is leading to. This concern carries more pertinence in the light of creations of several brand new institutes like IISER, NIESR, IIIST, IITs, Central Universities. This conference is envisaged to serve as a podium to address these issues.

Secondly, Professor S. Kumaresan turns 60 this year.

This conference wants to create an opportunity for his well wishers, friends, beneficiaries and students to honor him for the services he rendered in propagating mathematics and mathematics education.

 

 

Rationale and Objective

The Rationale

One of the burning issues that throws challenges on mathematics educators today is the concern of enticing young minds towards mathematics and later on prepare them to get into the emerging fields of mathematics.

One cannot help but noticing a recent phenomena that learning mathematics in its earnest way had been thrown into wayside by the teachers, which in turn inflicts a spiraling, irreversible damage on the quality of mathematics that they produce later.

We want to impress upon the fact that the solution to this malaise which is gripping the mathematics education, will not come from rearranging the topics in the syllabus or by adding more topics to an already bloated curriculum. Nor, would opening many institutes like IISER, NISER, IIIST, IITs, Central Universities, help solving the problem. In fact, this endeavor of opening institutes without much resources in terms of teachers will certainly worsen the problem.

In Mathematics, the questions asked and the struggles that the scientific community went through for answering these questions are dumped under carpet and the results of their struggles are seen as neatly packaged pieces of boxed text, which is not the case in other sciences. Many of us may not even know about the romanticism attached to say, crystallisation of the concept of a function.

Needless to say that, if mathematical community continues to have Nelson's eye on this lurking and perilous trend that is prevailing in "teaching of mathematics" the same community will be severely punished by the outcome of this trend in the days to come. This conference wants to address this problem.

Objectives

It is contemplated to bring out a white paper on the current situation of Mathematics education in India and the possible remedies to circumvent.

The broad objectives of this conference are

  • To seize the attention of the mathematics community, educational institutes, government agencies concerning the deterioration in terms of number and quality of mathematics teachers.
  • To provide a platform to review the issues involved, share experiences on the development of education at both Graduate and Post-Graduate levels.
  • To consider the feasibility of integrating Information and Communication Technology, to improve learning of Mathematics more effectively.
  • To prepare ourselves to be aware of the skills and experiences of the experts exploring and employing new techniques and strategies to make inroads to bring sustainable reforms in Mathematics teaching and assessment.
  • To strengthen professional networking among mathematics educators locally and globally (It has already been created at the initiative of Professor S. Kumaresan).
  • To create a liaison in order to bring a close partnership between established institutes like TIFR, ISI, IITs and other established universities; and the newly formed institutes like NISER, IISERs and central universities in more concrete and tangible way.
  • To explore the ways to be part of a global consortium of international organisations working towards achieving this goal in Mathematics Education.
  • To honor Professor S. Kumaresan for his relentless services in propagating mathematics and mathematics education locally as well as globally, and highlight his penchant for pioneering translational education - true to its word - in mathematics, the first of its kind in India.

 

Advisory Committee

  • Prof. M. S. Narasimhan
  • Prof. M. S. Raghunathan
  • Prof. Dani
  • Prof. M. G. Nadkarni
  • Prof. Balasubramanian
  • Prof. Ravi Kulkarni
  • Prof. V. Kannan
  • Prof. R. Tandon
  • Prof. S. C. Bagchi
  • Prof. Adimurthi
  • Prof. S. Kumaresan
  • Prof. V. S. Sunder
  • Prof. S. Kesavan
  • Prof. Kapil Paranjepe
  • Prof. I. K. Rana

 

Contact Person: 
Prof. T. Amaranath, F.N.A.Sc. & Dr. Varadharajan Muruganandam
Contact Address: 

Contact E-mail : con.edumath [at] gmail.com

Organisers
Prof. T. Amaranath, F.N.A.Sc.
Dean, School of Mathematics and Computer/Information Sciences
University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad - 500 046
Ph: 040-23010560

Dr. Varadharajan Muruganandam
School of Mathematical Sciences
NISER, Bhubaneswar - 751 005
Ph: 0674-2304063

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