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Visualizations for Mathematics Courses Based on a Computer Algebra System

B. Amrehein
Mats Bengtsson
Organization: National Defense Research Establishment
Roman Maeder
Organization: Wolfram Research, Inc.
Department: Kernel Technology
Journal / Anthology

Journal of Symbolic Computation
Year: 1997
Volume: 23
Page range: 447-452

This paper discusses the introduction of a computer-algebra system to perform visualizations in mathematics education. With the Illustrated Mathematics project, we provide a comprehensive collection of graphics and animations for various topics in mathematics, which can directly be used for teaching. Because the programs (written in Mathematica) we used for the creation of this collection are included, it is easy to design new examples by modifying parameters in existing examples. Therefore, Illustrated Mathematics can be used as a first step of the introduction of a computer-algebra system in mathematics education. In the second part, we report on the development of a workbench and learning environment, with which the students can discover the mathematical concepts by themselves. For that, the given examples have to be didactically enriched and processed. By creating their own visualization of increasing complexity, the students improve their knowledge about the underlying computer-algebra system.