Monday, June 05, 2017

[486] ‘MTSU On the Record’ learns math skills from the ‘unknown student’

MURFREESBORO — The next edition of the “MTSU On the Record” radio program will examine a clever way to help reduce math anxiety.

Host Gina Logue’s interview with Angela Barlow, director of the Mathematics and Science Education Doctoral Program at MTSU, will air from 9:30 to 10 p.m. Tuesday, June 6, and from 6 to 6:30 a.m. Sunday, June 11, on WMOT-FM Roots Radio 89.5 and

In “Learning from the Unknown Student,” a report Barlow wrote for the academic journal “Teaching Children Mathematics,” the professor describes how to create a fictional student to introduce problem-solving methods into the classroom.

The “unknown student” could be a real former student, a totally fictional student or a composite of several former students. By telling the class that this “unknown student” tried to solve a problem in a certain way, students can feel free to try it without fear of embarrassment or reprisal.

“What we’ve learned is that when we … show students what to do, then the students just accept that and don’t critically think about it,” said Barlow. “That doesn’t effectively support their learning.”

To hear previous “MTSU On the Record” programs, go to

For more information, contact Logue at 615-898-5081 or WMOT-FM at 615-898-2800.

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