12 Mar '19 19:452 edits

First of all, I don't believe there's ONLY ONE way to learn mathematics.

There may be different learning styles for students with different talents.

So I disagree with parts of this cited article.

The author, Barbara Oakley, is a woman who began as very poor in mathematics.

She became a professor in engineering, NOT in mathematics.

Note that, as an engineer, she's NEVER required to do any original mathematics.

All that she has to do is learn how to apply some mathematical techniques.

So I disagree with her dogma "The building blocks of understanding are

memorization and repetition", which fail to address creativity in problem-solving.

I note that she described routine basic undergraduate mathematics

classes as 'hard' mathematics. That was true for her, but I (like many

students) found them trivial.

I am glad that Barbara Oakley found a way that works for her to improve.

But she's not qualified to understand how real mathematicians

think when attempting to do non-trivial mathematical work.

http://nautil.us/issue/40/learning/how-i-rewired-my-brain-to-become-fluent-in-math-rp

"How I Rewired My Brain to Become Fluent in Math

The building blocks of understanding are memorization and repetition."

--Barbara Oakley

"With my poor understanding of even the simplest math, my post-Army

retraining efforts began with not-for-credit remedial algebra and trigonometry.

This was way below mathematical ground zero for most college students.

Trying to reprogram my brain sometimes seemed like a ridiculous

idea—especially when I looked at the fresh young faces of my younger

classmates and realized that many of them had already dropped their

hard math and science classes—and here I was heading right for them."

I would add that appearing to understand a teacher's words during a lecture

does not necessarily mean that one understands how to solve problems.

Solving problems is the test of understanding.

There may be different learning styles for students with different talents.

So I disagree with parts of this cited article.

The author, Barbara Oakley, is a woman who began as very poor in mathematics.

She became a professor in engineering, NOT in mathematics.

Note that, as an engineer, she's NEVER required to do any original mathematics.

All that she has to do is learn how to apply some mathematical techniques.

So I disagree with her dogma "The building blocks of understanding are

memorization and repetition", which fail to address creativity in problem-solving.

I note that she described routine basic undergraduate mathematics

classes as 'hard' mathematics. That was true for her, but I (like many

students) found them trivial.

I am glad that Barbara Oakley found a way that works for her to improve.

But she's not qualified to understand how real mathematicians

think when attempting to do non-trivial mathematical work.

http://nautil.us/issue/40/learning/how-i-rewired-my-brain-to-become-fluent-in-math-rp

"How I Rewired My Brain to Become Fluent in Math

The building blocks of understanding are memorization and repetition."

--Barbara Oakley

"With my poor understanding of even the simplest math, my post-Army

retraining efforts began with not-for-credit remedial algebra and trigonometry.

This was way below mathematical ground zero for most college students.

Trying to reprogram my brain sometimes seemed like a ridiculous

idea—especially when I looked at the fresh young faces of my younger

classmates and realized that many of them had already dropped their

hard math and science classes—and here I was heading right for them."

I would add that appearing to understand a teacher's words during a lecture

does not necessarily mean that one understands how to solve problems.

Solving problems is the test of understanding.