Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP)
Update by Dr. Eldon C. Baldwin
 

PGCC participated under a Clark Atlanta University (CAU) MSEIP grant from fall 1996-spring 1998.  Then, in 1999, PGCC received direct MSEIP funding to build on the ongoing Clark Atlanta activities.  The principle goal of this three-year activity is to increase the success rates of students enrolled in mathematics courses that are required of majors in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology (SMET) through: 1) expanded access to instructional technology, 2) continued enhancement and expansion of EDUCO materials, 3) continued development and inclusion of interdisciplinary learning and performance modules in mathematics courses and, 4) related professional development for full-time and adjunct faculty and tutors. 

We are now in the third year of this activity. In the area of expanding access to instructional technology, we created a second mathematics computer classroom in Marlboro 3113.  This new classroom includes an up-to-date instructor workstation and a modified room lighting system.  We have installed similar instructor workstations, including ceiling mounted data-video projectors in nine traditional mathematics/ developmental mathematics classrooms.  In addition, we have renovated our older mathematics computer classroom (Marlboro 3119) so that its configuration is now similar to that of Marlboro 3113. 

We are making significant progress toward the goal of expanding EDUCO materials.  Members of our department have written two new EDUCO publications: Intermediate Algebra by Baldwin and Kumar for use in MAT 104, and Trigonometry with Analytic Geometry by Beck for use in MAT 134.  Both texts are accompanied by electronic versions that we call “tutorials.”  I am currently editing Intermediate Algebra for a new edition, and Chrissie Planchak is editing electronic tutorials.  We expect to have the revised materials ready for broader use in fall 2002.  Several developmental mathematics faculty members have also contributed significantly to improvements in EDUCO textbooks used in DVM 003 and DVM 007. 

Students who purchase EDUCO textbooks for use in DVM 003, DVM 007, MAT 135, MAT 136, MAT 241, 

and MAT 242 also receive a CD-ROM that permits them to access electronic tutorials and quizzes over the Internet.  These materials are also available on the college academic network. 

Each semester the mathematics department offers MSEIP-sponsored professional development technology workshops for developmental and credit mathematics and engineering faculty and staff.  These workshops are designed to introduce faculty and tutoring staff to instructional technology hardware, software, and teaching techniques that can now be employed in all of our mathematics classrooms and tutoring sessions.  We have used MSEIP funds to acquire several software packages, for which we offer faculty training during our workshops. 

Major changes to entry level credit and developmental mathematics courses have occurred during the life of our MSEIP grant.  The array of alternative course offerings has been simplified, while at the same time the content and standards for these courses has been maintained or increased. 

With support from Information Systems, The Mathematics Department is in the process of establishing a permanent student database that will begin with all students who enrolled in fall 1999 mathematics courses.  This database will include selected demographic information, placement test scores, and course grades.  Analysis of this data will enable us to study the impact of curriculum and technology changes that have been implemented, progress toward our goal of increasing the success rates of mathematics students, and impediments to that progress. 

Our college is now participating with Clark Atlanta University in a new two-year cooperative grant.  Starting in spring 2002, PGCC will function as a regional center for technology training and dissemination, supporting of minority institutions in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and central Virginia.  In addition, we are preparing to apply for a new three-year grant that will assist us in creating a large Mathematics Assistance Center on the third floor of Marlboro Hall.  Through the use of this center, we plan to begin replacing some of our “chalk talk” classroom time with various alternative forms of individualized student support, including technology, group work problem solving, and tutoring. 

Chesapeake Hall Foyer

 

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