Meeting with John Mason

Mood:  a-ok
Topic: Meetings
So John and I met for lunch on Thursday last week together with Safiya (??) to talk a bit about my work. So, carried along my preliminary analysis to see if he has any ideas and whether he can point me in some direction and he has given me some leads.

 He indicated he was interested in the relationships, details and properties of problems (i.e. these are the things that students are looking for – or rather when a student sees a problem this is what they try to do particularly when there is an example which they can follow).

John suggested that I look at how the students see the worked examples and how they compare what they have in their problem to the worked example. Also, check and see what they’re saying or looking at to check whether their worked example mirrors their own problem.

John suggested I look at what the students are doing when watching the screen or problem – that is check their sense making (i.e. levels of sense-making – this is way the relationships, properties and details come in). Suggested I look at the times when the students are gazing, when they’re going between things (on the screen, the paper etc.) and when there is a language shift such as “This is like” to things like “this is an example of”. Reckon the students who are sense-making more are the deep explainers and better students.

Connected to this, he suggested check and see which group looks at the materials and who don’t and check these against their claims of confidence in mathematics (can’t remember why exactly – but reckon because these will be sense-making more or perhaps students who are not confident will check the paper more often?).

With respect to the relationships, details and properties … students would gaze at the problem as a whole and then should start looking the details and they then look at the relationships which are related to the properties of the problem. Ok – think I’ve sort of lost this thread of thought – I perhaps got to get John’s paper on this and see how he explains it exactly – hopefully this is his research when he was talking about it.

He also mention some guy call Sen Campbell at Simon Fraser University was setting up a lab for eye-tracking and testing ECG for students doing maths and science (wants to check their anxiety etc.) – sounds interesting might check him out.

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