Monthly Archives: October 2015

Something from the New York Times for my colleagues to consider: “Does the college lecture discriminate? Is it biased against undergraduates who are not white, male and affluent?”

The number of black engineers graduated by Florida State University has dropped by almost half over the last decade.  Other science departments are struggling with black enrollments as well.  Given this, it’s worth considering the New York Times piece from … Continue reading

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Are you interested in what it’s like to be involved in a teaching reform effort at a research university? Then read this.

Occasionally, someone will ask what it’s like to be involved in a teaching reform effort at a research university, as I have been for the last decade.  The answer to that question was published a few years ago in Physical Review … Continue reading

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Making Bright Futures relevant: Using Florida’s premier merit-based scholarship program to improve STEM-readiness

State Senator and former Yahoo executive Jeremy Ring has proposed requiring two computer coding credits in high school for Bright Futures eligibility (SB 468).  His bill also requires every Florida high school to provide computer coding instruction.  If Ring’s bill … Continue reading

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On testing and accountability, Florida should adopt the Kentucky Plan

As the Orlando Sentinel’s Leslie Postal pointed out in her article about the FSA exam dilemmas facing Florida’s State Board of Education, setting cut scores and passing rates is a delicate dance that requires fortitude but also a feel for the political situation. … Continue reading

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What percentage of Florida’s students are on track for 21st century career options? Isn’t that the question the FSA should be answering?

Commissioner Stewart’s recommendation that between 50% and 60% of Florida’s students pass the FSA math exams (except for 8th grade – ignore that for now and I’ll get back to it) has set her up for a confrontation with Jeb … Continue reading

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Precalculus in Florida’s high schools: Are your district’s students being prepared properly for 21st century careers?

With all the debate over what percentages of Florida students should be allowed to pass the state’s new FSA standardized exams, we keep forgetting why we are testing them in the first place.  The reason we test our students is … Continue reading

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Does a school district’s success in teaching math depend on socioeconomics? Sure, but there’s more to it than that.

Yesterday’s release of FSA data (posted at School Zone and Gradebook) in which the numbers of students in each school and district scoring in each of Florida’s quartiles shows there was considerable variation from school to school and district to district.  The correlation … Continue reading

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