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Keynote Speakers

John Squires, Chattanooga State Community College

Title     Meeting the Challenges: The Goals of Math Redesign

Description  John Squires is the math department head at Chattanooga State Community College.  He has led successful math redesign projects at two colleges, and worked with colleges around the nation to implement course redesign.  He recently co-authored a paper for the American Association of Community College on gauging the effectiveness of developmental studies programs, which will be discussed.  He has seen gender, race, and income achievement gaps close at both Cleveland State Community College and Chattanooga State Community College.  He will discuss working with high schools, expanding dual enrollment programs and the impact on graduation rates.

John Squires has been teaching math for over 20 years. He was the architect of the nationally acclaimed “Do the Math” program at Cleveland State Community College and is now head of the math department at Chattanooga State Community College, where he has implemented course redesign throughout the department.  He has worked with colleges and high schools to improve learning by using technology.  His work has been recognized by the League for Innovation, the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Community College Futures Assembly, and President Obama. 

Vilma Mesa, & the Teaching Mathematics in Community Colleges Research Group, University of Michigan

Title   Making sense of teaching: Different ways to look at mathematics classrooms

Description: Recent calls for reform in undergraduate mathematics suggest that including students in mathematical discussions can be beneficial for their learning. Managing this is difficult for teachers. Using transcripts and other records, I will illustrate how we investigate what goes on in a math classroom attending in particular to different patterns of participation and the types of mathematical questions asked by teachers. I will end by discuss the affordances and challenges of sustaining high-quality discussions of mathematical ideas.

Vilma Mesa is Assistant Professor of Education at the University of Michigan. She investigates the role that resources play in developing teaching expertise in undergraduate mathematics, specifically at community colleges and in inquiry-based learning classrooms. She has conducted several analyses of textbooks and evaluation projects on the impact of innovative mathematics teaching practices for students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. She has a B.S. in computer sciences and a B.S. in mathematics from the University of Los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia, and a master’s and a Ph.D. in mathematics education from the University of Georgia.

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