Conveying the importance of Mathematics
This is vital for any mathematics student to realize the importance and significance of mathematical tools in any other area of study, be it economics, financial theory, accounting, econometrics, statistics or the sciences like physics and chemistry. Even the field of human resource that has strictly been thought of as a social science area is nowadays making use of analytical tools to evaluate workplace behaviors. In most undergraduate school calculus and pre calculus are core courses. Students have an inward feeling that they are forced to take these courses. The instructor primarily needs to wipe out such feeling of coercion. For this purpose, teacher can explain applications of mathematics in different fields of study. For this purpose, using animated articles and making them read by slide projections, showing small documentaries involving engineering and other projects which made use of mathematical principles, and other videos for this purpose may be helpful. Showing interviews of mathematics graduates employed at key positions in industry can also be useful. Students need to realize that mathematical tools are key to excellence in any field.
Maintaining a Course Website
Increasing number of instructors around the world is realizing the need to maintain a proper and frequently updated course website. Websites may contain class lectures, study notes; sample quizzes, videos shown in class, and links to websites that explain career opportunities for mathematics majors. Students from different cultures and languages may find it useful to read lectures that are translated into their language, or made simpler for them to understand. Websites are always useful for lagging students and those who want to study extra other than class lectures for their curiosity.
Website should be frequently updated with new videos, success stories and newly invented mathematical models. A list of mathematicians who obtained Nobel or other awards may be maintained, especially those from same origins as the students.
Math societies and conferences
Students should always be urged to question and critically evaluate the existing theories and models. To develop such insight, teacher may find it feasible to take the students to visit math conferences where new models are presented and old models and theories are debated. Such visits may be made mandatory. In case of conference in another city or country, a recording of the proceedings may be shown in class. Many universities have mathematics societies and learning groups. These groups and societies may hold math challenge tests and project analysis. This urges curiosity among the students to work independently and examine mathematical tools. Such societies may also hold their own conferences at university level to share the idea and thoughts on existing course materials, theories, models and most importantly, teaching assessments.
Books and Movies
Another way to arouse student curiosity and interest in any subject is making use of books and movies that are appealing to their age. There have been movies relating to field of mathematics like ‘The Beautiful Mind’ and ‘Good Will Hunting’. Other than that, teacher can briefly introduce the books on mathematics from different cultures that have contributed a great deal to the advancement in this field. For example, to arouse interest of students from Middle East teacher may choose to give an introduction of books written by Arab scholars centuries ago. History if presented charmingly has a lasting effect on students and greatly contributes to arouse interest.