Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Mathematics and Statistics

Committee Chair(s)

E. Robert Heal


E. Robert Heal


Lawrence O. Cannon


James T. Dorward


National studies indicate major deficiencies in students' understanding of mathematics. Research suggests that students tend to view mathematics as a set of computational rules rather than a process of discovery and a tool for problem-solving. Most students fail to grasp the concepts behind the computations.

Technology provides a partial solution to this problem. Over the past decade, computers have emerged as a powerful tool in education. Computers place the control of action in the learning process with the student. They allow students to experiment with, explore, and discover mathematics at their own pace. With computers, students can consider more examples than are possible with a pencil and paper. The graphic capability of computers aids students in concept visualization; the computational capacity allows them to focus on concepts while the computer executes the tedious computations.

The purpose of this thesis is to facilitate the effective use of computers in mathematics education. The primary component of this thesis is a CD-ROM containing a suite of computer manipulatives intended for use in the mathematics classroom. An explanation of the manipulatives accompanies the CD-ROM, as does a description of the creation process.



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