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8. Communication and Dissemination

Consortium dissemination efforts will include two Long Island-wide Saturday conferences each semester, one on a pedagogical or educational technology topic and one on a curricular topic. In the first year, the pedagogical themes will be: (a) cooperative learning across the quantitative curriculum (e.g., getting physicists to hear how economists promote such learning), and (b) how to develop multimedia materials to enhance classroom presentations. The curricular themes will be a) new directions for mathematics in physical sciences instruction, and b) enhancing curricular ties between computer science and mathematics. (Starting in the third year of the project, similar Saturday meetings will be held in the three other major regions of New York State.) There will be one state-wide 2-day conference each year, similar to the successful fall, 1994 Albany conference, to bring together hundreds of people interested in diverse reform efforts.

Electronic communication (discussed in Section 4) will be the primary means of day-to-day communication among the consortium members. There will be a quarterly consortium newsletter, edited by Fred Rispoli of Dowling College and Peter Henderson of Stony Brook. It will be distributed electronically and by hard copy with a local and national mailing list. It will have regular columns on topics such as cooperative learning and educational software. Contributors will be drawn from consortium faculty and collegiate education experts from across the country. Each issue will have a primary focus on the two themes of the current semester's Saturday meetings.

Along with a few full-fledged experimental texts, the project will publish a series of educational modules and notes of enrichment materials developed by the project task forces, in the spirit of the CoMAP modules. A list of titles with brief abstracts will be widely circulated across the country electronically and by hard copy. The editor of this modules/notes series will be Sheldon Gordon of Suffolk Community College, who has edited two MAA Notes volumes. The project will maintain an extensive home page and file of information on Mosaic, e. g., newsletters, conference proceedings, and modules. As noted in topic iii) of section 5.A, in latter years, extensive hypertext materials will be made available.

Project members will give talks and short courses at professional meetings and educational conferences, such as the IEEE/ASEE Frontiers in Education Conference. Presentations will discuss new materials and software but most will focus on the overall process of creating an interconnected learning environment. The Mathematics and Education Reform network (MER) will publicize the Consortium�s efforts (see MER letter of support) at its meetings. Project directors will also share information with other mathematics and chemistry projects in this NSF program and in the Engineering Education Coalitions Program.

Oral and written discussion of our consortium�s organization and efforts should be of considerable assistance to others. However, full implementation of our model by a collection of institutions or a single institution will require a core group of dedicated faculty backed by strong institutional support. The measurable outcomes of improved student learning we expect to obtain should help backers of our model marshal administrative and faculty support. We view the project's implementation efforts across SUNY as critical in demonstrating the portability of our model.

In addition to full-scale implementation of our model, more modest levels of interconnected learning can be planned among a mathematics department and a couple of science departments. Further, our interconnected model will benefit traditional (smaller) instructional projects by showing how they can be enhanced by making connections to other changes occurring at their institution.

Stony Brook President Shirley Kenny, in cooperation with the Carnegie Foundation, has just formed a 'blue ribbon' National Commission on Educating Undergraduates at the Research University, chaired by Carnegie president Ernest Boyer. As indicated in Kenny's letter, she will promote the consortium's model for an interconnected learning environment to the Commission.

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The Long Island Consortium is sponsored by the NSF Initiative: Mathematical Sciences and Their Application Throughout the Curriculum, DUE #9555142. The original NSF proposal can be accessed by clicking here.

Last updated October 7, 1997. Please direct comments or suggestions to Webmaster@licil.org