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Free is Good

March 21 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


Jim Hefferon, University of Vermont

Innovation E432; 4:00 PM

ABSTRACT: In the culture of Mathematics we value openness, cooperation, and collaboration.  No one would be surprised to find that a colleague had put all of their training and energy into a project, working for months or even years, and then posted the results on arXiv for others to use freely and perhaps extend.  A similar culture of sharing is common among teachers in general, and in particular among teachers of mathematics.

Now that distribution of significant books no longer requires the production of a physical object, a number of authors and author groups in our subject are producing texts that are open.  We will focus on undergraduate mathematics texts.  These have been getting adopted and we will discuss what to look for if you are considering such a text for a class.  We will also discuss what it takes to produce a high quality work, if you have an idea for making one yourself, including outlining the technical process and some non-technical processes such as licenses.

These works have promise for making things in undergraduate mathematics education better than they are.  We will close by discussing how we can help to develop a mindset that values and promotes this as a professional activity.

ADA: Individuals requiring accommodations, please contact Doreen Taylor at (802) 656-3166


March 21
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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