To Be Presented in the 11th Asian Technology Conference in Mathematics
December 12-16, 2006, Hong Kong SAR, China

Is it time for ICT to drive the curriculum?

Douglas Butler
iCT Training Centre
Oundle School


Looking around at teaching programs for school and college level mathematics, there has been little real acknowledgment of the impact ICT could have on WHAT is taught. There has been plenty of discussion in recent years about the fantastic impact computer methods can have on HOW the existing curriculum can be taught. We should now start assuming that students will be working in the environment that the adults work in - ie with permanent fast broadband connection and mature and powerful mathematical computer packages.

With this assumption this paper will argue that it is time to take a radical look at the mathematics we expect the young to know about, and how to incorporate the new uses that mathematics is being put to in the modern workplace. The main areas under consideration will be:

  1. 3D applications to transformations using matrices and dynamic software
  2. CAS-embedded coordinate geometry: new ways to illustrate the basic principles of calculus
  3. Application of chaotic behaviour in the world of forecasting
  4. Statistics with no boundaries: at last, large data sets in the classroom
  5. New generation web-based resources: virtual learning environments

NOTE: The panels have dipped into this area over the previous few years, but I think it is time now to take a longer look at the possibilities. I will also of course have come fresh from the ICMI study in Hanoi, and will be able to include some ideas from that.

Tied into all this is the impact that a modern looking curriculum would have on the motivation of the young to want to study Mathematics, and of teachers to teach it. I hope this year's Panel will want to cover this aspect.

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