In support of liberal education, scientific careers, teacher preparation, and actuarial science, the mathematics department prepares students for quantitative and symbolic reasoning and advanced mathematical skills through general education, service, major and graduate programs.
The Department of Mathematics contributes to the mission of the University by contributing to a community that encourages and supports the emotional, personal, and professional growth of students from a variety of backgrounds. The Department is involved with extending the University’s work through the community colleges and currently has one tenure-track faculty member at the centers and is searching for a second tenure-track position at the centers. The Department is also involved with community colleges through projects such as the Transition Math Project which focuses on aiding students make a transition between high school and college. The Department of Mathematics also offers three undergraduate majors (B.A. in Mathematics Teaching Secondary Education, B.S. in Mathematics, B.S. in Mathematics with Actuarial Science Specialization) and three minors. It is an integral part of the General Education program (teaching over 1,000 students in General Education each quarter). Finally, the Department also offers one graduate degree (M.A. for Teachers in Math).
The Mathematics Department is a strong department with a focus on student learning. Over the last three years all three of our major programs have been analyzed and revised in an effort to insure all of our student learning outcomes are being met. Goal 1: The Department faculty will consist of excellent teachers who maintain active scholarly lives. Goal 2 : In order to promote programmatic continuity and an active scholarly environment, the Department faculty will consist largely of full time permanent faculty. Goal 3: The Department will provide travel support for faculty. Goal 4: The Department will be able to provide up to date computing equipment to tenure stream faculty. Goal 5: The Department will have access to adequate classroom and office spaces. Goal 6: The Department will support inter-departmental and community collaboration for teaching, scholarship, and service. Goal 7: The Department will attract more well-prepared students from diverse backgrounds to our programs. Goal 8: The Department will help with career placement and graduate study. Goal 9: The Department will continue to evaluate the feasibility and desirability of other graduate programs. Goal 10: The Department will continue to update curricula and program offerings via needs assessment.
The Mathematics Department is a strong department with a focus on student learning. Over the last five years all three of our major programs have been analyzed and revised in an effort to insure all of our student learning outcomes are being met. These self-studies have resulted in our department incorporating more relevant technology into our classes (Mathematics, Maple, Excel, Minitab, etc.). We have also begun offering a wider variety of “topics” courses to ensure that students are exposed to a breadth of mathematical content.
The Mathematics Department feels that it continues to accomplish Goals 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 9. Goal 5 continues to present difficulty as the Mathematics Department is now currently split between two buildings with inadequate office space for some full time faculty. Space concerns will increase in the upcoming year with the addition of an Office Assistant position and a new tenure-stream in Mathematics Education. It has been suggested that this may be overcome by placing faculty in a third building however, this further complicates the logistics of the department as well as potentially damaging the cohesiveness of the faculty. Goal 7 and Goal 8 have probably not been pursued as much as they should be due to a lack of faculty time. Improvement is being made on Goal 10, in particular, the BA and BS degrees in mathematics are currently developing a cohesive assessment plan that will include a capstone seminar for all graduating math majors.
The following are the actions taken as a result of the Departmental Program Review. Actions were taken based on the recommendations of the external evaluator and we highlight those areas that were emphasized by either the Dean of the College of the Sciences or the Associate Vice-President for Undergraduate Studies. Recommendation 1: Continued and expanded support for the Chair. Recommendation 2: Departmental Steering Committee to advise and assist the Chair. The Dean of the College of the Sciences emphasized these recommendations, both of which involve support for the position of Department Chair. While the total number of workload units supplied to support the Department Chair has not increased, the Chair has been given latitude to divide the allotment between him/herself and others in the department. A Departmental Steering Committee has not been formally created, it has been discussed at Departmental Meetings, and the Program Directors are currently serving the role of an informal Steering Committee. Recommendation 3: Consider discontinuation of the BA degree program. The Dean of the College of the Sciences emphasized this recommendation. The department has folded its BA degree into a lower-credit option for the BS degree. This effort was done in conjunction with the creation of new program goals (see Recommendation 10). Recommendation 3: Revise the BS degree to allow alternatives to the Introductory Physics Sequence. The Dean of the College of the Sciences emphasized this recommendation. The department has replaced the Physics requirement with a more general requirement of a lab science sequence culminating in a calculus based science course. Recommendation 4: Increase publicity and recruiting for all degree programs in the department. While the department recognizes the importance of recruitment, no action has been taken on this item. However, the 2+2 program offered at Lynnwood is planning a recruitment drive this year. Recommendation 5: Improve availability and timeliness of institutional data on majors and degrees awarded. While the Mathematics Department recognizes this as an important recommendation, the administrative offices of the University would be better able to implement this recommendation. Recommendation 6: Continue clarification of expectations and a review of the faculty reporting process to see if they are too burdensome. Annual performance portfolios require enormous investments of time and energy, both physical and emotional. The Dean of the College of the Sciences emphasized this recommendation. While the Mathematics Department recognizes this as an important recommendation, the administrative offices of the University would be better able to implement this recommendation. Recommendation 7: Increase efforts to reward faculty performances with merit pay increases. The Dean of the College of the Sciences seems to have emphasized this recommendation by stating “Linking merit to scholarly productivity is a key recommendation to the administration by this reviewer.” The Department would like to note that the reviewer does not link merit to “scholarly activity,” but rather to a more general category of “faculty performance.” There are efforts on campus to more closely tie merit pay increases to performance; however, there is little the department can do internally. Recommendation 8: Clearly delineate the kinds of scholarship (but not necessarily quantified as in one publication every two years) that is desired or accepted. The Dean of the College of the Sciences emphasized this recommendation. The Mathematics Department continues to refine its Reappointment, Tenure, Promotion and Merit policies. Hopefully a final form that is acceptable to both the department and the Dean will appear this year. Recommendation 9: Analyze the effect of increased class sizes on instructional practices and faculty workloads with an eye towards higher quality instruction and efficient use of faculty resources. No such analysis has taken place. At this point, all classes have increased to a maximum size (imposed by physical classroom space) and so any study would be limited by the lack of a subpopulation with smaller (or larger) class sizes. Recommendation 10: The mathematics department should examine closely the purpose of the BS and BA Mathematics degree programs, whether both are needed, the learning goals, and the assessment of these learning goals. This is being undertaken as part of Recommendations 3 (listed above) and 12 (listed below). Recommendation 11: The mathematics faculty should explore ways and means of making the BS/BA degree programs special among those at four-year institutions. No action has been taken on this recommendation. Recommendation 12: The assessment learning of the BA/BS programs should be reviewed, clarified, and implemented. The Associate Vice-President emphasized this recommendation and an assessment plan has been drafted. The department will implement a Capstone Seminar that will allow the collection of assessment data. This Capstone Seminar should be offered for the first time in Winter 2009. Recommendation 13: Develop an interim solution to the office, storage, and classroom shortages. The Dean of the College of the Sciences emphasized this recommendation. There is still no long-term plan to solve the space shortages in the Mathematics Department. Since the reviewer’s visit, another 2 full time faculty positions and one office assistant position have been added. The result is that more faculty members are being assigned offices in Hertz music practice rooms or in Black Hall. Recommendation 14: The mathematics requirement for future elementary teachers should be reviewed with an eye toward increasing the mathematics requirement to at least two courses that are especially designed for future elementary school teachers and take into account the recommendations in the MET Report and other recent publications on the mathematics of teaching. There has been a new tenure-track position created for the purposes of increasing support for the Elementary Education program. However, the 36 credits per year gained as part of the new position are offset by a need to add 45 credits per year in coursework. The net result will be the need for 9 more credits of adjunct or non-tenure-track teaching each year. The Elementary Education program has added increased courses in mathematics to their program. Recommendation 15: The mathematics required by all majors should be reviewed with special attention to business and biology. While the Mathematics Department recognizes this as an important recommendation, those in control of the curriculum of the other majors would be in a better position to implement it. The Mathematics Department has been in discussion with other departments (including both business and biology) about what mathematics courses could be offered or adjusted to provide better service to these majors.
The department has experienced an increase in scholarly activity. This is in part due to increased pressure from the administration, but also a reflection of recent faculty turn-over resulting in more faculty members in the early and middle stages of their career. Enrollment has also increased. While this is creating difficulties in lower level classes (particularly the General Education classes), it has been a boon for the upper level classes within the mathematics majors. The University Math Center now supplies drop-in and appointment based tutoring for many of the lower level classes in mathematics. The Center for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Education was funded through a Spheres of Distinction grant and is providing broad support for improvement in the Mathematics teaching programs. Departmental funding has been able to support faculty and student travel as well as computer hardware and software upgrades. However, this funding is primarily through revenues through Continuing Education (Cornerstone and Summer Session) which means that it may be eliminated by the administration without notification in the future. The department has developed a policy on Retention, Tenure, Promotion, Merit, and Post Tenure Review. While this document has not yet been ratified at the college level, it does provide incoming faculty with a clearer idea of departmental expectations. The department is moving to implement assessment plans for both its programs as well as its General Education offerings. These plans are currently in a nascent form and will likely need to be revised as they are implemented. The mathematics department has been very successful at expanding its Cornerstone Program (offering Dual Enrollment across Washington). This increase is linked to both the activity of the Cornerstone Director as well as the strong Masters of Arts in Teaching program that certifies teachers to participate in the Cornerstone Program. Student involvement has also increased. We have had a number of successful teams in the COMAP Mathematical Contest in Modeling, fielded a Putnam Examination team in 2007, placed a number of students in the NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates program, and supported a number of student presentations at the Mathematical Association of America Pacific Northwest Region meeting in 2007. The department has been involved in a number of interdisciplinary projects either through programs such as the Middle School Math Science Program or the Center for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Education, through grants such as the Interdisciplinary Lively Application Projects at CWU, or faculty research such as the work of Dr. Englund with Nutrition.
Space remains the primary challenge. Since being listed as a critical issue in the review, the Math Department has gained another 2 tenure-stream faculty and a new office assistant. The result is that four faculty are now housed in old music practice rooms in Hertz and one faculty member is housed in Black. We still lack space for storage of portable technology and finding appropriate classroom space is becoming more difficult. Increased Faculty Expectations are starting to create difficulties. Increased enrollment without an equivalent increase in faculty positions has led to increased teaching responsibilities (as classes grow in size and overloads are required) as well as limiting the possibility of piloting innovative teaching methods. Scholarship requirements have increased and faculty are now expected to remain highly productive throughout their entire career. This makes it difficult to find faculty members willing to focus on service activities (that would normally fall on more senior members of the department). Finally, the service load has increased with new expectations on the level of assessment that is conducted by faculty. The bureaucracy continues to expand at CWU. Examples of this include: attempts to obtain funding for conference travel; reappointment, merit, performance review, salary adjustment, annual activity reports all request similar but differing requirements; scheduling is now done so far in advance, that “last minute” changes are almost a necessity. The department will need to find a way to administer an off-campus program at Lynnwood. This presents challenges both in supervision as well as balance workloads (as excess work at Ellensburg cannot be distributed to the center at Lynnwood). Both SAFARI and the CWU Website continue to be difficult to use and information that should be easy to find cannot be accessed in a reasonable manner. Examples of problematic issues are as simple as looking up a student using both the student’s first and last name. As the CWU Website becomes more important to faculty (through the Workload Plan and the Annual Activities Report), resources should be allocated to hire long-term programmers (as opposed to using work study students).
The Department of Mathematics contributes to the mission of the University and College of the Sciences by providing four majors (B.A. in Mathematics, B.A. in Mathematics Teaching Secondary Education, B.S. in Mathematics, B.S. in Mathematics with Actuarial Science Specialization), three minors, one graduate degree (M.A.T), service to other departments and colleges, and contribution to the general education program. Each of these components has different goals and objectives. The Department has identified goals, established assessment tools and set benchmarks for each. We aim to measure whether students are meeting our goals for their mathematics education and to measure whether our programs are meeting the goals for what we claim we want to accomplish. It should be noted that the Mathematics Department is considering converting its B.A. in Mathematics to a B.S. in Mathematics (distinguished from the current B.S. by a lower credit-count).
Undergraduate Programs: BS Mathematics: The Bachelor of Science degree is the perfect major for those planning on a career in business, industry, or continuing on to graduate school. The curriculum for this program is based on the Mathematical Association of America Committee on Undergraduate Mathematics Programs Curriculum Guideline. BS Actuarial Science Specialization: Our department offers a variety of courses and seminars to prepare prospective actuaries for examinations given jointly by the Society of Actuaries and the Casualty Actuarial Society. Specialized courses in probability, mathematical statistics, stochastic processes, loss models, life contingencies, and the theory of interest have helped our program earn an enviable reputation for producing well-trained graduates. B.A. Mathematics: Teaching Secondary Major: Central Washington University has an excellent reputation and a solid heritage as a teaching institution. This major prepares students to teach secondary level mathematics and satisfies the endorsement for Mathematics. This program is guided by standards set by the National Council of Mathematics Teachers and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. Middle Level Math/Science Teaching Minor: This minor is designed for students who wish to teach science and/or mathematics at the middle level (grades 5-8). Completion of this minor provides a Middle Level Math/Science endorsement. The coursework provides experiences in mathematics and science content and pedagogy including field experience. This program is guided by standards set by the National Council of Mathematics Teachers and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. Certification Programs: Students who have a BA or BS can enroll in the following teacher certification and a secondary mathematics endorsement programs. The CWU Mathematics Department has two certification programs: 1) An open enrollment program on Ellensburg Campus and 2) A cohort program at CWU Lynnwood called Career Switcher. Students seeking enrollment for either of these programs must meet the admission requirements for the Mathematics Education Program and Teacher Education Program (TEP). The curriculum for both programs is the Teaching Secondary Mathematics Minor. To complete both programs students must meet all the requirements of the Teaching Secondary Mathematics Program (Complete all mathematics courses with a C or better, complete all courses in the TEP, have a 3.0 GPA in the last 45 credits, complete the Mathematics Education Electronic Portfolio, and pass the West-E exam). Graduate Programs: Masters of Arts for Teachers (MAT): This program has been structured mainly for junior and senior high school mathematics teachers. It also may prepare a student for community college teaching and for advanced study in mathematics education. Sequencing of the required coursework is minimal and makes it possible in most cases to complete all the requirements for the degree in three consecutive summer sessions. This program is guided by standards set forth by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
The Mathematical Association of America’s Committee on the Undergraduate Program in Mathematics (MAA CUPM) released their latest set of recommendations for departments, programs, and all courses in the mathematics sciences in 2004. The program currently being offered follows these guidelines and faculty members frequently attend conferences with presentations and workshops discussing undergraduate education. Currency of Curricula in Discipline: Secondary Education At least six sets of guidelines with similar prescriptions from the secondary mathematics education program at CWU. The most important of these is the benchmark document, The Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (National Council of Teachers). Other sets of guidelines mirror those of the Standards and have followed them historically. They include the State Certification Standards, Professional Standards for Teaching Mathematics, and Standards for Assessing Mathematics (NCTM), and The Mathematical Education of Teachers (Conference Board of the Mathematical Sciences). This program also adheres strictly to NCATE accreditation standards. CWU’s Actuarial Science program is the only program in the state of Washington and also the largest advanced undergraduate program west of Mississippi River ranked according to the national standards published by the Society of Actuaries—the largest actuarial professional society in the United States. (The Society of Actuaries is a nonprofit educational, research and professional society of 17,000 members involved in the modeling and management of financial risk and contingent events.) The CWU mathematics department is also proactive through education committees such as the development of the endorsement standards and Transition Mathematics Project. Conducting the publishing research on mathematics education is one of the reasoning state leaders look to our department for leadership.
The program assessment plans describe the annual activities undertaken to review and improve instructional effectiveness. In particular, the department uses a variety of sources to collect information about student learning, including portfolios, reflective essays, student and graduate surveys.
Program directors create assessment reports for their respective programs and this assessment is communicated yearly to the department chair in the spring. These reports are then forwarded to the Dean and the Associate Vice President of Undergraduate Affairs. A departmental self-study is conducted on a regular basis and these results are submitted to the Dean and the Associate Vice President of Undergraduate Affairs.
Annual assessment reports are being systematically implemented for the first time in Spring 2008. The Associate Vice President for Undergraduate Affairs has promised feedback on these reports. The departmental self-study is read by both the Dean and the Associate Vice President for Undergraduate Affairs and letters are written that highlight some of the more important recommendations.
Currently the department is involved in the Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning portion of the University’s General Education program. Assessment for this aspect of General Education is done by confirming that course student learning outcomes are in line with the University’s standards and that these student learning outcomes are being assessed as part of the course. A more coherent assessment of the General Education program is probably warranted at the University level.
Masters in the Art of Teaching Mathematics (MAT) Graduate Program Goal 1. Recruit mathematical educators that have an interest in addressing the reform called for by the National Research Council and State of Washington Academic Achievement and Accountability Commission. Goal 2. Enable mathematics teachers to improve their ability to teach mathematics while achieving their professional certification. Goal 3. Increase the conceptual and procedural understanding of the main mathematics strands. Goal 4. Equip and enable mathematics teachers to use problem solving and modeling to teach key mathematics concepts and procedures. Goal 5. Develop and enable mathematics teachers to teach mathematics as a connection of concepts and procedures. Goal 6. Use technology appropriately to teach mathematics. Goal 7. Use pedagogical methods that engage students in doing meaningful mathematics. Goal 8. Write and evaluate curriculum that aligns with the NCTM standards and Washington State EALRs. Assessment of M.A.T Goals: Written exams, written problem-solving papers, oral presentations, worked problems, written lesson plans and units, demonstrations of the use of different technology tools, and teaching lessons to peers
Course content is significantly more advanced than undergraduate mathematics education courses. Students are also more mature as one admission requirement is at least one year of experience with secondary school teaching.
2006: Creating a Means of Assessing the Quantitative and Symbolic Skills and Reasoning Goals Two and Three by Undergraduates CWU Students by John Ellsworth ? by Jami Suhoversnik Determining Which Algebra Textbook Most Improves Student Achievement at Quilcene High School by James Weller The Effects of an Extended-Time Learning Environment on Math Challenged Junior High Students Using a Standards Based Curriculum by Robert Balderston Is Study Group Participation Associated with Students’ Attitudes and Acheivement in Developmental Math at Utah Valley State College by Clayton Brown. 2007: The Effect of Active Learning Techniques on Student Achievement in an Introductory Algebra Course at CWU by Roger Fischer Curriculum Comparison of CPM Foundations with Accelerated Mathematics and Applied Math by Dameon Marlow The Effects of a High School Algebra Lab on Student Acheivement by Jeanice Schmick An Action Research Study on the Effects of Implementing a Technical Reading Strategy in a Traditional Mathematics Classroom by Kristen Shields A Method of Improving Mathematics Teaching Effectiveness in Washington State’s Public High Schools by Charles Wikman Student Group Size vs. Individual Acheivement by Tamera Wiley 2008: The Achievement Differences Between Calculator-Based and Computer Simulation Based Instruction Experiment Activities in a Trigonometry Course by Lili Cao Web-based Assessment of Central Washington University’s Math 100B Basic Skills by Sellie Clark The Real Numbers and Set Theory by Douglas Gorter Information Sharing and Student Achievement by Greg Hurlburt The Association of Peer Tutoring with Achievement on Test Retakes in an Integrated Mathematics Course by Tyler Mitchell Accountability Via Exams: Increasing Probability of Future Success by Cheryl Nicculm How Valid, Reliable, and Motivating Are Portfolio Assessments in An Algebra II and Geometry Class? by Pamela Perez Music in the Mathematics Classroom by Colleen Radke The Effectiveness of Teacher Created, Internet-based Resources in a Secondary Mathematics Classroom by Greg Wagner
The department is not currently using distance education.
Blackboard: Used for online course delivery. The following courses have made use of Blackboard in the past: Math 299E, 323,324,499E, 515, 535, and 553. Livetext: Used for online assessment. The following courses have made use of Livetext in the past: Math 299E, 323, and 499E.
We are not currently teaching any distance education classes. However, past experiences with distance education have led to the opinion that face-to-face instructional procedures are to be preferred.
Career Switchers is a very streamlined program offered at the Lynnwood Center that allows a career switcher to accept a job for the fall 12 months from the beginning of the program. A tenure-track mathematics instructor is located at the Lynnwood Center and participates in meetings with the other mathematics education instructors at the main campus on a quarterly basis. The Department Chair visits the Lynnwood Campus at least once each year (quarterly if possible). To assess student learning, the Career Switcher program uses the same tools for assessment (Portfolios in MATH 299E, 324, and 499E and the WEST-E examination) to assess student learning.
The Department secretary can help students with placement in lower division general education courses and can help arrange meetings with the Department Chair or an academic advisor. When students are ready to declare a major they meet with an academic advisor in their program area. This advisor explains the program requirements and helps the student plan their schedule. New advisors are initially guided by experienced advisors when first taking on students. Informal advice is given by all faculty. This can be advice concerning the next mathematics course to take or even advice about applying for scholarships and graduate school. Students in the Actuarial Science program are given career placement advice and the academic advisors often arrange for businesses to conduct student interviews on campus for summer internships as well as full time appointments. At least once a year there is a leader from the actuarial science industry invited to campus to give a talk about career opportunities in this field.
Course equivalency is determined by examining course descriptions, course level, course credits, course syllabi. If this information is inconclusive, more information may be requested, in particular, choice of textbook, sections covered, and exams administered may be used to determine the equivalency.
The department regularly participate in the Freshman Orientation, the Major Fair and regularly host representatives from area companies who come to CWU to interview our students for summer internships and full-time positions. The GEAR UP & Cornerstone Math Coordinator travels to schools throughout the state of Washington. At times, students and teachers will ask specific questions about majoring in mathematics at Central which opens a door to recruiting talented students. GEAR UP hosts a college visit for sixth graders to CWU where students from participating schools visit various disciplines and are exposed to the university life. The Mathematics Department had two sessions during this program. Cornerstone is also encouraging high school students into mathematics and becoming mathematics majors at Central. The fact that Central is awarding college math credits is an incentive for students to consider these choices. Additionally, this year, the Cornerstone program has worked with admissions to recruit these students and offer scholarships to them to attend CWU.
Instructors advise students of the University Math Center during the first week of classes each term. Usually this includes handing out bookmarks produced by the University Math Center listing tutoring hours and locations. Later in the quarter, instructors advise struggling students to use the University Math Center.
Math Club: Oscillates between active and non-active. During 03-04 the Math Club was quite active an organized colloquia and a pizza social. Actuarial Science Club: This organization is quite active. They organize field trips and invite speakers to discuss career opportunities in the insurance industry. Mathematical Competition in Modeling: Since January 2002 CWU has had one or two teams competing in this international competition. Results have been very good (except for the first year, all teams have received a Meritorious ranking and the 2004 team received the Ben Fussaro award for most creative solution). Putnam Examination: Since December 2006, CWU has fielded a team in the annual Putnam Examination.
Regional/National Presentations by Students: Blair Sherman, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2007 Melissa Thompson, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2007 (two talks) Alisha Zimmer, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2007 Brian Sherson, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2007 Mike Leatherman, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2007 Amber Goodrich, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2007 Andrew Musselman, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2005 Seth Miller, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2005 Dustin Mixon, PNW-Mathematical Association of America, 2005 Awards: Alisha Zimmer, NSF REU, 2007 Melissa Thompson, NSF REU, 2006 Jennifer Lampi, Douglas Honor Student, 2005 SOURCE Presentations/Posters by Students: Amber Goodrich, 2007 Melissa Thompson, 2007 Jeanette Bjorkqvist, 2007 (poster) Ian Bonallo, 2007 (poster) Brandon Turner, 2007 (poster) Benny Thompson, 2007 (poster) Dean Bunnell, 2007 (poster) David Brown, 2006 (poster) Carlee Larson, 2006 (poster) Stephen Mun, 2006 (poster) Andrew Musselman, 2005 (two presentations) Amy Eglin, 2005 Nicholas Stanford, 2005 Katherine Alexander, 2005 Terri LeBlanc, 2005 Lindy Mullen, 2005 Jeff Charbonneau, 2005 Eric Dean, 2005 Sam Hunn, 2005 Jessica Reisen, 2005 George Winner, 2005 Emily Smith, 2005 (poster) Sean Walsh, 2005 (poster) Beth Coopersmith, 2005 (poster) Faith Kirk, 2005 (poster) Justin Compton, 2005 (poster) Sunshine Li, 2005 (poster) Suen Ching Chan, 2005 (poster) Lindsay Wiseman, 2005 (poster)
Career Placement The actuarial science program keeps better records of this information. Here is their placement information from last year: Career Placement, Graduates in Spring 2005 Name Career Placement Dan Moss Regence BluShield Jennifer Lampi Safeco Insurance Chris Gossage Regence BlueShield Tara Husko Premera BlueCross Faith Kirk Northwestern Mutu 2005 Payton,Quinn C Premera BlueCross Sunshine Li Towers Perrin
The Mathematics program has grown significantly in enrollment since 1997. This has allowed the inclusion of a wider variety of traditional mathematical topics. Students have been participating (and succeeding) in national mathematical contests (COMAP MCM, Putnam Examination, and NSF REU programs). The program has also been successful at sending graduates on to graduate schools. The Secondary Teaching program continues to recruit and place qualified candidates and graduates respectively. Students have been doing well on external standards such as the WEST-E Praxis Exam. The Actuarial Science program continues to have a strong passing rate on the SOA/CAS Examinations and to place students into appropriate positions after graduation.
The mathematics department comprises a faculty of twenty four full time members of which sixteen are tenure-track, six are non-tenure track in full time instruction, and two teach and/or share administrative responsibility for grant and university programs. Additionally, two faculty members continue teaching through a phased retirement program and three additional individuals are typically hired for adjunct instruction. Of the tenure-track positions, three members have expertise in probability, statistics, and/or actuarial science (one of whom is an Associate of the Society of Actuaries); five members have expertise in mathematics education; and the remaining eight members have expertise in areas of mathematics including algebra, topology, differential geometry, applied mathematics, dynamical systems and harmonic analysis. The sixteen tenure-track ranks are distributed as follows: six professors, six associate professors, and four assistant professors. We currently employ the following directors: Director/Chief Advisor of Secondary Education: Mark Oursland; Director/Chief Advisor of Actuarial Science: Yvonne Chueh; Chief Advisor for BA/BS Mathematics: Tim Englund; Director of MAT Graduate Program: Michael Lundin; Director of University Math Center: Erin Lee; Mathematics GEAR UP and Cornerstone Director: Nancy Budner.
The department provides funding for travel to conferences and workshops. The department has been involved in curricular change and has a high profile among the nascent Quantitative Literacy movement.
Excellence in teaching is the most important factor in evaluating faculty for reappointment, tenure, or promotion. Scholarship forms an important part of the criteria for evaluation. The Department has adopted the “Glassick” model of scholarship that includes the scholarship of Discovery, the scholarship of Integration, the scholarship of Application and the scholarship of Teaching. The Department also regards service to the Department, College, University and Community as important. These policies are implemented by a three person Departmental Personnel Committee as well as the Department Chair. A full copy of the Department’s Personnel Policy can be found on the Department’s web site.
It is believed that the mathematics faculty is currently much more active then it was, say, ten years ago. While teaching has always been important to the department and our department has always had a solid collection of excellent teachers, we are now seeing more of our faculty going to (and presenting at) conferences devoted to the teaching of undergraduate mathematics. We are doing a better job of clearly articulating departmental expectations regarding teaching as well as scholarship, for new hires. We are seeing an increase in scholarly activity among our faculty (published papers, presentations at conferences, supervising student research, securing internal and external funding). Service requirements have remained constant despite the increased requests for scholarship. In addition to traditional service requirements (such as sitting on committees at the departmental, college, and university level), the faculty members have seen a significant increase in paperwork requirements (particularly at the level of the chair).
SEOI data is used in the reappointment, tenure, promotion, merit, post-tenure review process. Primary focus is on questions regarding teaching effectiveness of the instructor and intellectual challenge of the class. Peer Observations of teaching are also conducted, primarily with a focus on formative evaluation. Student interviews are conducted as part of the tenure process. These interviews are primarily used for summative evaluation. Course syllabi and primary graded assignments are reviewed across classes every other year.
The high percentage of full time non-tenure track faculty creates a number of problems. However, this is not the result of their teaching abilities, but the following: Failure by CWU to provide long-term contracts for historically stable positions creates concerns about potential turn-over. Obviously this is a concern for the non-tenure track faculty, but it is also a concern for the department as it may lose good faculty due to the late date at which contracts are offered. Service credits are lost when non-tenure track faculty are hired instead of tenure-stream faculty. Under the ratio of 12:2:1 for teaching:scholarship:service, each non-tenure stream faculty (hired for 45 workload units) results in a loss of approximately 3.75 workload units of service. Unlike scholarship which is tied to individual faculty members, service is heavily tied to the size of the department and hence this loss means there isn’t time to meet all service requirements. Given the high number of large general education courses taught by the department, retaining a relatively large proportion of full-time non-tenure track faculty is reasonable, however, accommodations must be made to retain these faculty members and tenure-stream faculty must be provided with adequate service release to compensate.
Data provided by Instructional Research and other appropriate offices.
The library contains a current selection of undergraduate level textbooks from a wide variety of sub disciplines. The library subscribes to MathSciNet which is a great source for abstracts and mathematical reviews. Full text articles are not always available, yet often a copy can be requested from a participating library. These resources can be accessed from the centers via courier.
The library has an adequate program of acquisitions.
The Mathematics Education programs are the only programs currently expecting an information literacy proficiency component. Both the undergraduate and graduate programs (in mathematics education) have multiple assignments/assessments aligned with standard (Use and participate in professional mathematical organizations: NCTM-2003-SEC.8.5) Most of the assignments/assessments in both programs are to use the Internet and/or other resources to find lessons aligned to state and national standards (also on the internet). Example Summative Assessment from Undergraduate E-Portfolio: Artifact: Integrated unit aligned with the state EALRs. Reflection on how this unit meets NCTM-2003-Sec. 8.5 Write a thoughtful and insightful reflection of how your artifacts demonstrate your ability to participates in professional mathematics organizations and uses their print and on-line resources.
Communication with the library is done through the Department’s Library Liaison.
The department holds a number of older texts and journals that have been donated by faculty. These materials are freely accessible by students looking for additional sources of information.
The Department Chair is primarily responsible for making/approving decisions that affect the entire department. In many cases information is distributed and gathered via bi-weekly (approximately) department meetings. In many instances (faculty searches, curriculum changes, textbook decisions, student awards/scholarships) ad hoc committees are convened to bring recommendations to the department as a whole. Based on a simple majority vote a decision is made. The chair oversees that the decision is conveyed to appropriate parties. Because of the complexity of the department, the chair relies on specific designated personnel/directors to offer sound recommendations that pertain to specific programs. In particular we currently employ the following directors: Director/Chief Advisor of Secondary Education, Mark Oursland; Director/Chief Advisor of Actuarial Science, Yvonne Chueh; Chief Advisor for BA/BS Mathematics, Tim Englund; Director of MAT Graduate Program, Michael Lundin; Director of University Math Center, Erin Lee; Mathematics GEAR UP and Cornerstone Director, Nancy Budner. The above faculty members act as liaisons and chief policy advisors to the chair regarding their appropriate programs.
Department level decisions are usually decided at department meetings with a simple majority vote. All members of the department present (including non tenure-stream instructors) are allowed to vote in these decisions. Budgetary decisions are made by the Department Chair, often within guidelines prescribed by Departmental Meetings or with faculty input. Department members also serve on College and University committees.
Faculty involvement in university governance is appropriate, but limited time makes it difficult to fully participate. At times decisions appear to be made in the administration with little or no consultation with the faculty. One example would be conversion of classrooms from chalkboards to white boards despite requests that some rooms retain chalkboards. In this case, it is unclear if feedback was ever solicited at the departmental level.
Department budgets are heavily dependent on revenue from Summer instruction and the Cornerstone program. Without these resources, the majority of our faculty travel would not exist and computer upgrades would be less frequent. Support for faculty development (at the University and College levels) has increased. However, some of this is coming from the skimming of summer revenues which ultimately reduces the Math Department’s allocation (as we make a significant profit in the summer).
There are currently no department based fundraising activities.
Space concerns have reached a critical point in the department. Currently faculty members in our department are spread across three different buildings (Bouillon, Hertz, and Black) on campus. The quality of the faculty offices are highly variable (we have a full professor in an old music practice room in Hertz and a full time non-tenure-stream faculty member in a large new office in Black). This physical separation also makes it difficult to colocate resources and we lack adequate storage space for files and portable technology. Total square footage allocated for the Math Department is 4382 square feet, however, to support a department of this size, approximately 7038 square feet are needed. Classroom space is also becoming increasingly difficult to find. Not only are there not enough physical rooms available, but many rooms are being refitted with technology that is not the most conducive to the teaching habits of our instructors (many of whom strongly prefer chalk over markers).
Please see "technology" section below.
Every tenure stream faculty member receives a new computer when they are hired. For the last five years, we have been trying to replace these computers every three years using summer revenues. The three-year old computers are used in full time non-tenure-stream and adjunct offices. Thus, most all faculty have relatively new computers. Between summer revenues and faculty development funds, most individual software requests are fulfilled. There is one multimedia station available for student use in the library/lounge. Students can use this machine to work on homework or prepare their electronic portfolios. There are three classrooms in Bouillon which have “smart” consoles. However, that does not mean they are equipped with the specialized software needed in many mathematics courses. The computer lab does contain specialized software, but is shared with the Communications department which can make scheduling difficult.
Department faculty members are usually simply told that classrooms have been lost, or that room configurations are going to be changed. In particular, we recently lost our last two good chalkboard rooms in the building after asking that they be preserved.
The Department has no such statement. Organizations in the field of mathematics and actuary science that do have codes of ethics or professional conduct are: The American Mathematical Society <http://www.ams.org/secretary/ethics.html> The Mathematical Association of America <http://www.maa.org/aboutmaa/whistleblowerpolicy.html> The Casualty Actuarial Society <http://www.casact.org/about/policiesProc/index.cfm?fa=code> The Society of Actuaries <http://www.soa.org/about/membership/about-code-of-professional-conduct.aspx>