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Real-World Applications of Mathematical and Scientific Principles in the Curriculum for College and Career Success

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Using Applications and Projects in Teaching Mathematics

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

25.1100.1 - 25.1100.13



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Paper Authors


David I. Spang Burlington County College

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David Spang is the Vice President of Academic Programs at Burlington County College in Pemberton, N.J. Prior to being named Vice President, Spang served as Dean of the Science, Mathematics, and Technology Division. Spang holds a Ph.D. degree in materials science and engineering and a M.B.A. degree, with a concentration in innovation and technology management. Prior to joining academia, Spang spent nearly 20 years in R&D and business development.

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Kathleen Spang Middlesex Boro High School

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Kathleen Spang has been a high school educator for more than 25 years, teaching all levels of mathematics, including Advanced Placement, at Middlesex Boro High School in N.J. Spang earned her doctorate in mathematics education from the Graduate School of Education at Rutgers University, with a focus on how students learn mathematical ideas.

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Real-World Applications of Mathematical and Scientific Principles in the Curriculum for College and Career SuccessWith a large expected need for scientists, engineers, and technologists it is increasingly critical tothe world economy to interest and train students in the technical disciplines. Student interest inmathematics and science is often positively influenced by an understanding of the practicalapplications of the principles they are expected to learn. Furthermore, specific applications oftenlend themselves to demonstration and alignment with certain principles and teaching techniques.Students who show an interest in mathematical and science principles, gained through anunderstanding of the applications of these principles, are more likely to persevere in their degreeprograms and experience career success.The difficulty in presenting applications to students often lies with the constraints on classroomtime and with limited instructor interest and training. This pilot effort involves incorporatingapplications into the teaching curriculum by identifying relevant applications, subsequentlyidentifying foundational skills associated with such applications, and then linking the applicationto one or more basic principles. Additional considerations to be discussed include instructortraining and preparation, alignment to expected academic outcomes and assessments, andsubsequent continuous improvement processes.

Spang, D. I., & Spang, K. (2012, June), Real-World Applications of Mathematical and Scientific Principles in the Curriculum for College and Career Success Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21857

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