Intuitive explanations of basic engineering-related mathematical concepts

Published in: Innovation in Education and Inclusion : Proceedings of the 16th LACCEI International Multi-Conference for Engineering, Education and Technology
Date of Conference: July 18-20, 2018
Location of Conference: Lima, PerĂº
Authors: Daniel Raviv (Flordia Atlantic University, US)
Full Paper: #212


Current students learn differently: many instructors observe less textbook-reliance and more dependence on web-based explanations, short videos, animations, and demonstrations. When it comes to concept comprehension, students repeatedly miss the Aha! Moment, and ask for more hands-on, experiential, visual, intuitive, fun (e.g., game-based), and tech-based information. Clearly, basic concepts should be introduced in easy-to-comprehend, visual, and intuitive ways. This is most relevant in math courses that are usually taught with little or no connection to other disciplines, and in particular engineering. This paper focuses on introducing basic math concepts by linking them to daily experiences using relevant analogy-based examples, to be introduced prior to delving into purely mathematical explanations and proofs. The paper uses tangible examples for visualizing some concepts in algebra and set theory, as well as for visual interpretation of large and small numbers.