Project NExTMAC:
New Experiences in Teaching Mathematics Across Canada

June 2004 Workshop

Our third national workshop will be held on Saturday June 12th, 2004 at Dalhousie University. The next day marks the start of the 2004 CMS Summer Meeting, also at Dalhousie University.

This annual workshop is the central component of Project NExTMAC (New Experiences in Teaching Mathematics Across Canada), the primary goal of which is to provide junior mathematics and statistics faculty (as well as graduate students who will soon become junior faculty), many of whom do not have a wealth of teaching experience, with information and resources that will enable them to become better and more effective teachers of mathematics and/or statistics. In addition to sessions that focus on pedagogical issues related to teaching mathematics and statistics at the university level, the workshop aims to provide a safe and non-critical setting in which junior faculty can freely share their ideas and concerns with a group of peers.

Workshop Schedule

The workshop will be held in the Mathematics Learning Centre, located in Room 008 of the Chase Building, which is shown as building C280 on this map of the Dalhousie University campus. A photo of the Chase Building (as viewed from the north) is prominently displayed on the website of Dalhousie's Department of Mathematics and Statistics.

The schedule for the day is as follows.

8:30 am Workshop Check-In
9:00 am Call to Order & Greetings from workshop organisers
9:10 am Session 1: Teaching and Learning with Students with Disabilities: An Interactive Forum
Facilitator: Mary Ellen Clancy (STFX)
Panelists: Holly Bartlett (Dalhousie), Elizabeth Hirsch (STFX), William (Duffy) McDonald (STFX)
10:15 am Greetings from CMS President Christiane Rousseau (Montréal) and CMS President-Elect Eddy Campbell (Memorial)
10:30 am Refreshment Break
10:50 am Session 2: The Speaking Voice and How to Use It
Facilitator: Susan Stackhouse (Dalhousie)
11:45 am Break for Lunch
1:45 pm Session 3: Adjusting to Academia
Panelists: Nancy Clarke (Acadia), Laurie Ricker (Mount Allison), Gary Sneddon (Memorial)
2:50 pm Session 4: Good Teaching, Good Learning
Facilitators: Grace Orzech (Queen's), Morris Orzech (Queen's)
3:55 pm Refreshment Break
4:10 pm Session 5: Group Discussion on Handling Students with Deficiencies in Mathematics
5:15 pm Session 6: Free Group Discussion
6:00 pm Closing Remarks & Participant Survey

For lunch we have made arrangements to eat at the Dalhousie University University Club, shown as building C440 on this map.

Session Abstracts

Teaching and Learning with Students with Disabilities

Mary Ellen Clancy, Coordinator for the STFX Program for Students with Disabilities, will lead this forum discussion. She has provided the following abstract:

The probability is high that you will meet students with disabilities in your classes. As a university teacher you will need to know how to make effective working partnerships with these students. This session will provide an overview of the programs and services available at most post-secondary institutions and give you the opportunity to discuss the role professors can play in the success of students with disabilities who are studying mathematics. The panel offers experience from the perspectives of students, teachers and service providers. Bring your questions and experiences. We look forward to an informative and lively discussion.

The Speaking Voice and How to Use It

This session will address the fundamental issues of breathing, volume and power, articulation and care of the voice. Learn and/or review the process and exercises for proper vocal development; a professional voice warm-up, that you can use to prepare for teaching/speaking; how to deal with common vocal problems and what to do about bad habits. There will be time allotted for discussion around specific voice-related concerns.

The session leader will be Susan Stackhouse, who is a specialist voice, speech and dialect coach. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Theatre at Dalhousie University, where she teaches in the acting program, directs and voice coaches productions as well as researches Canadian dialects. She was the recipient of the 1999-2000 Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Award for Teaching Excellence at Dalhousie University.

Adjusting to Academia

In this session a panel of faculty members will share some of their experiences and observations on the issue of making the transition from being a graduate student to being a faculty member.
Good Teaching, Good Learning

Planning a university mathematics course, and how to conduct classes, involves balancing sometimes opposing desires. For example, the need to introduce mathematical material can work against the desire to engage students through class activities. Large classes make it more challenging to maintain the interaction and conversation that are necessary for learning. Instructors want to be fair to students in assigning and marking work, but this concern can lead to unreasonable demands on the instructor's time. University mathematics courses usually have an agenda that includes having students understand abstract ideas, but it can be difficult to achieve this while giving students enough practice with the concrete examples they so desire.

This session will examine some of these tensions. Through consideration of specific questions and examples we will discuss some principles that can be helpful in balancing a complex mix of desires, to help make a mathematics course a good experience for the teacher and for the learner.

Handling Students with Deficiencies in Mathematics

This session provides an opportunity for workshop participants to discuss issues pertaining to teaching students who are in some way mathematically deficient. Participants are encouraged to share their personal experiences, especially any strategies for dealing with and resolving various situations.
Free Group Discussion

This session is set aside as a mostly unstructured session so that workshop participants can discuss topics of their choosing, such as topics that might not have been addressed earlier in the day, or topics that were touched on but which people would like to return to.

All workshop participants should pre-register for the workshop by clicking the ``NExTMAC Workshop'' option on the registration form for the CMS Summer Meeting.

The workshop registration fee of $15 will be processed by the CMS, who will provide the workshop organisers with a list of registered workshop participants.


Information about lodging options can be found on the website for the CMS Summer Meeting.

Contact Information

Questions, etc, about the workshop can be directed to either David Pike ( or Robert van den Hoogen (


We gratefully acknowledge support from:

About Project NExTMAC

For more information about Project NExTMAC, including information about our previous workshops, please refer to our main webpage.

Last Modified: Tuesday, 08-Jun-2004 13:59:25 NDT