Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



In his recent book What the Best College Students Do [Bain, 2012], Ken Bain defines a number of different types of students including “surface learners,” “strategic learners,” “routine experts,” and finally, “deep learners.” In our mathematics courses at Trinity, we have found examples of all of these student types. A major determinant of their preferred approach to learning appears to be the ways and degrees to which mathematical texts and other written materials are read prior to class sessions. Each full-time member of the department both assigns and assesses the reading of mathematical materials prior to class sessions. Assessment methods, as well as the corresponding pedagogical choices, vary significantly. We also discuss the results of a related survey of over 100 Trinity undergraduates enrolled in mathematics courses during fall 2012.



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