Last week, 37 math instructors from Michigan, Texas, Illinois, California, New Jersey, South Carolina, Missouri, Washington, Massachusetts, Indiana, Arizona, and Qatar gathered at Muskegon Community College to be participants in the 2nd MCC Math & Technology Workshop.  The conference this year was generously supported with donations by TechSmith, Wolfram Research, Wacom, Plantronics, and MichMATYC.   If it wasn’t for these organizations and their generosity, it is very likely that this workshop would not exist.


Despite some pretty unexpected mishaps (read Thursday’s post), I think I can safely say that everyone went home with a head full of ideas and a technology support network of new friends.

In this week, “Technology Bootcamp” participants learned how to use:

In addition to learning how to use specific software, there were sessions on:

  • using web-based math resources and digital libraries
  • applying learning styles in online courses
  • designing an online math course
  • best practices in using online homework
  • basics of good presentation design
  • playing with SmartBoard technology
  • organizing yourself in the digital world
  • the future of math instruction and higher education

This was the first year we had an “advanced” group (clever name anyone?).  The returning participants wanted lots of time to work on their own projects, so they got that and more:

How much fun did we have this week?  When was the last time you had to tell a room of math instructors not to laugh so loudly?

Yes, we are already thinking about next year’s workshop.  And, yes, I will try to think of some scheme that will allow 3rd-year participants to come and just hang out, help out, and get their digital stuff done.

If all the stars align and we continue to have corporate sponsors (and possibly a few grants), the 2010 MCC Math & Technology Workshop will be Aug. 9-13, 2010.  Official news about registration usually comes out around the time of AMATYC (November) and the workshop filled up fast last year, so clear your schedule and start bargaining for travel funds if you want to go.

Now for my list of  Thank You‘s:

  • Thank you to my college, Muskegon Community College, for playing host to the workshop again.
  • Thank you to the volunteers who provided rides to and from airports and ferries, and between the hotel(s) and the college.
  • Thank you to the faculty who helped out at sessions (especially those that got “drafted”).
  • Thank you to all the staff and faculty at MCC who stepped up to help out with a variety of crazy tasks (often at the last-minute).
  • Thank you to the outside presenters, Sarah Swart, Evert VanderBerg, Przemyslaw Bogacki, Dave McCollom, Harry Calkins, and Derek Bruff.
  • Thank you to Christine Gardner (my assistant) and Pauline Keith (our department secretary) who both spent time on logistics during the last few months to help make this event a reality.
  • Thank you to the participants, for spending your travel funds to hang out in Muskegon, Michigan and for subjecting yourself to technology overload for a whole week!
  • A big thank you to the Office of Information Technology for all their hard work to get the computers set up with an enormous list of software that we don’t usually install on lab computers and for their tech support in general.
  • Another big thank you to Jill Mueller, who gave up at least two weeks of her life to act as the Assistant Director for the 2009 MCC Math & Technology Workshop.
  • A gigantic thank you to the sponsors of this year’s workshop: TechSmith, Wolfram Research, Wacom, Plantronics, and MichMATYC who donated approximately $35,000 in software, hardware, and time.

Finally, thank you to my husband, “Mr. Busynessgirl” who simply says “make a list of everything you need me to do during this week” and then does them.