Mathematics Classroom Collaborator (MC2): Technology for Democratizing the Classroom
In any classroom, different groups of students may have unequal voices. This “lack of democracy” may be particularly problematic in STEM fields. To promote a more inclusive classroom, we developed and tested an online, real-time communication tool: the Mathematics Classroom Collaborator (\(MC^2\)). \(MC^2\) makes the entry of mathematics easy and intuitive, it includes an option for anonymity, and it works on a variety of platforms, including smart phones, tablets, and notebook computers. In this paper, we share our experience with employing \(MC^2\) in a statistics service course and an introductory probability course. We describe how this tool creates new communication models for the technologically-enhanced class — models that may help overcome social barriers to create a more inclusive environment, and that may lead to further democratization of learning, including increased participation by women and/or English-language learners. The results of an experiment to measure the effectiveness of \(MC^2\) compared to Microsoft Word Equation for novice users are also presented.
KeywordsTechnology-enhanced classes Mathematics Classroom Collaborator Democracy in the classroom
This work was supported by a research grant from eCampus Ontario.
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