Cross-disciplinary mathematics support from the students’ perspective

Deborah Cheryl Jackson

Abstract


Cross-disciplinary mathematics support, for a wide and diverse range of subjects and disciplines, is becoming an essential part of student success, retention and self-efficacy. Students are often faced with the dilemma of how much time and effort they need to devote to refreshing, relearning, or learning anew, mathematical skills. They are often encouraged to voluntarily join programs, attend help sessions, or frequent Maths Support Centres for skills improvement. The Maths Skills Program at La Trobe University is in its 19th iteration (running each semester since 2010 (see Jackson & Johnson, 2013; Jackson, Johnson & Blanksby, 2014). It provides tailored skills support for a wide range of subjects in STEM and Health Sciences. A Maths Hub has been developed in the past eighteen months for students to ask subject related maths questions to cover further material, more disciplines (including Business, Economics and Education), and more advanced subjects, enhancing and extending the already existing support. This talk explores the student experience of the Maths Skills Program and the Maths Hub, providing the student perspective through analysis of data collected. Student feedback, subject results, and self-reported improvement in maths skills and confidence, show students appreciate such support and positively gain from it.

Keywords


cross-disciplinary mathematics support, mathematical skills, mathematics confidence

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