First-Year Math and Stats in Canada


About the Repository

The First-Year Mathematics and Statistics Courses Repository is a resource supporting an ongoing national dialogue about teaching first year mathematics and statistics at Canadian universities. This shareable dynamic online database contains extensive data collected from mathematics and statistics instructors across the country. Data includes course content, resource and technology used, learning outcomes, modes of delivery, connections with other courses, as well as informal descriptions of various practices in teaching these courses.

It is our hope that instructors (i.e., our contacts at all participating universities, or their colleagues) will keep the database up to date, as well as provide missing, and additional information.

The main purpose of the First-Year Mathematics and Statistics Courses Repository is to provide an open, organized and comprehensive resource of information about first-year mathematics and statistics courses at Canadian Universities. We hope to enrich the content as we move along. 

Slides of the presentation (containing a broader context of our First-Year Math project and information about the Repository) that Veselin Jungic gave at the meeting of Canadian Mathematics and Statistics Department chairs in Ottawa, 23 March 2019.


Dear FYMSIC community,

It is with our deepest sadness that we are informing you that our colleague and friend Alfonso Gracia-Saz passed from Covid-19 on Thursday, May 6th, 2021. As Veselin Jungic put it: ‘I always felt that Alfonso actually enjoyed himself at our [FYMSiC] meetings’. He regularly attended our events and always had something insightful to share. We will remember him as an active member of our community, excellent teacher and mathematician, and above all, a beautiful human being. To learn more about Alfonso, read the Canadian Mathematics Society media release and the article in the Toronto Star. He will be missed.


 

Forthcoming conferences and meetings in 2021

We continue our Online Teaching Meet Ups! Each session will be approximately 1-1.5 hours with the following flexible structure: a short presentation, possibly a discussion in breakout rooms, and a general discussion. Each session will have a specific theme related to teaching. We will send out a communication a week before each session (including a Zoom link, which will be provided on this page as well) so that you can prepare yourself to chat, share, and listen. The dates are:

 

♦ Wednesday, 5 May, 2021 meet-up, 2:30-4pm EDT=Toronto time; Zoom meeting link [password: fymsic]How to teach ‘em proofs in first-year math and beyond? … Math proofs are the bane of most students’ existence in first-year math and in their upper-year courses! How can we attempt to make them less painful for our students? As well … what are some good strategies to introduce proofs and proving in first-year math? Assuming that you are designing a math proofs course, which concepts would you start with? Are there any resources that students can access before the start of a math proofs course or to supplement their learning within a math proofs course? Given limited resources, what are good strategies for assessing students’ knowledge of proofs? Should we teach math proofs within a standard first-year calculus course from good ol’ Stewart or similar texts? How can we strengthen our students’ ability to write math proofs beyond first-year?

Presenters: Peter Taylor (Queen’s University)  and Sean Fitzpatrick (University of Lethbridge)

Resources mentioned: Sean’s course outline https://www.cs.uleth.ca/~fitzpat/syllabus/Spring2021/Math3410/frontmatter-1.html | Proofs book Gila Hanna and Michael de Villiers: Proof and Proving in Mathematics Education: The 19th ICMI Study | Bran Katz: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1vmTZudm3xUqSY_6mWv4xowJKK9K3RlHY5WWq5TORslk/edit# also youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcW20KoiBFo | have a look at our google doc for comments, suggestions, ideas, and references  | Francis Su: Teach Math like you’d teach writing

 

♦ Wednesday, 19 May, 2021 meet-up, 2:30-4pm EDT=Toronto time; Zoom meeting link [password: fymsic]. By popular demand!! Part 2 of How to teach ‘em proofs in first-year math and beyond?  

Presenters: Shannon Ezzat (University of Winnipeg), Lauren DeDieu (University of Calgary) & Jerrod Smith (University of Calgary), and Kitty (Xiaoheng) Yan (Simon Fraser University)

 

Next:

CMS Summer Meeting (virtual), 4-7 June, 2021, in e-Ottawa … Meeting information.

Canadian Mathematics Education Study Group virtual meeting, 11-13 June 2021 … Meeting information

Wednesday, 14 July, 2021 meet-up 2:30-4pm (EDT=Toronto time); theme TBA

Wednesday, 28 July, 2021 meet-up 2:30-4pm (EDT=Toronto time); theme TBA

Wednesday, 11 August, 2021 meet-up 2:30-4pm (EDT=Toronto time); theme TBA

Wednesday, 25 August, 2021 meet-up 2:30-4pm (EDT=Toronto time); theme TBA

 

 


First Year Math and Stats conference will be back in 2022!


Past meet ups:

15 April 2021 (Thursday), 4:30pm (EST) [meeting link]: Collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEP) We strive to be more inclusive with FYMSiC. Most of us are not fully aware of what is being taught in, or the successes and challenges in teaching mathematics and statistics at CEGEP, and beyond, in universities in Quebec. For this first session on mathematics in Quebec, we will invite 3-4 CEGEP instructors to share their teaching experiences with us.

18 March 2021 (Thursday), 4:30pm (EST) [meeting link (zoom)]: Reflection & Check-in  … A space for a lively and healthy dialogue discussing, among other things, the following questions about online teaching and learning:

  • What have you learnt about yourself and your teaching practice?
  • What have your students learnt about online learning?
  • What will you use or not use when you eventually come back to teaching in person?
  • How has the mathematics and statistics you teach changed?

Read our jamboard with many good, interesting, and creative replies to these questions.

Link to our archive of past conferences and meetings


Brief notes and recent publications

Burazin, A., Jungic, V., & Lovric, M. (2021). Teaching during the pandemic: an open letter to my students, University Affairs. Retrieved from: https://www.universityaffairs.ca/opinion/in-my-opinion/teaching-during-the-pandemic-an-open-letter-to-my-students/

Deza, A., Hu, H., Maisuria, V., Liut, M., Petersen, A. & Simion, B. (2020). Using Discussion Board Data to Hire Teaching Assistants. Sixth SPLICE Workshop at L@S 2020. ​

Glynn-Adey, P. (2020). 
Using a wiki to collect student work in Vector Calculus. International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology.

Burazin, A., Jungic, V., & Lovric, M. (2020). Math, WiFi and no social life: The harsh realities starting university in a pandemic, The Hamilton Spectator. Retrieved from:https://www.thespec.com/opinion/contributors/2020/08/27/math-wifi-and-no-social-life-the-harsh-realities-of-starting-university-in-a-pandemic.html

Burazin, A., Jungic, V., & Lovric, M. (2020). Let them cheat: Why it’s tempting for college and university instructors to look the other way. CBC News. Retrieved from: https://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/opinion-academic-cheating-1.5576990.

Veselin Jungic published his opinion piece “Despite the pandemic, the rules of academic integrity still apply” in University Affairs, 21 April 2020.

 


Links

First Year in Maths is a network of over 200 mathematicians, statisticians and educators teaching in universities, colleges and schools in Australia and New Zealand.

Have something interesting to share? Send your contribution to our First-year Math and Stats in Canada Newsletter editors.


Link to our archive of past announcements, news, etc


Our Vision

We believe that only by sharing experiences, gathering data, and looking at research-based decisions and strategies, our mathematical teaching community can come up with ideas and initiatives for university faculty and instructors to restructure their programs and to respond to the demands that the realities of today’s living place on us and our students.

It is our belief that the contacts at a national level (such as the Mathematics Education Session at the CMS conference in Waterloo in December 2017, the First Year Conference in April 2018 at the Fields Institute, and the Winter CMS Session in Vancouver in December 2018) will connect, and unite Canadian teaching and research faculty in their efforts to provide the best, and most adequate, post-secondary math education possible, and will provide a forum for all involved to learn about the complexity of issues related to teaching mathematics. We see the national dialogue as an ongoing process that will keep us all connected and strengthen our community.


 

FAQ

1. Who is the intended audience?

All interested faculty in mathematics and statistics departments in Canada, mathematics and statistics department chairs, college instructors, high school teachers (grade 12 mostly) interested in knowing what’s going on in level 1 mathematics and statistics, as well as education developers and publishers.

 

2. How will this information be shared?

The information is shared with approved members of the repository. Those who are interested will fill out a questionnaire. After the application information has been verified by the page administrators, and it has been determined it fits with the purpose of the repository, access (login and password) will be granted.
 

3. How frequently is the data updated?

This would depend on the curators at each institution. As the main purpose of the database is to provide a snapshot of teaching level 1 mathematics and statistics, it would be ideal if the curators visit their part of the database as often as possible, to correct existing data and enter missing data.
 

4. How do I sign up to access the Repository?

Send an email to Veselin Jungic (vjungic@sfu.ca) or Miroslav Lovric (lovric@mcmaster.ca).
 

5. Is this done under CMS (Canadian Mathematics Society)?

No. This is a grass roots initiative led by Dr. Lovric and Dr. Jungic, in part supported by the Fields Institute, Simon Fraser University, McMaster University and the EDC Grants for Exchange.