Generation

Share Cognitive Science Implications for Teaching Mathematics
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Generation is an attempt to answer a question or solve a problem before being shown the answer or the solution.
• Fill in the blank test questions are simple examples of generation.
• Using known concepts to devise a solution to an unfamiliar problem without being told how to solve the problem is a form of generation we expect students to demonstrate in math classes.
I tell my students that the purpose of early college level algebra courses is to introduce the student to the use of abstraction, generalization, and deductive reasoning while exploring the patterns and relationships of a variety of algebraic entities including, but not limited to, equations, inequalities, algebraic fractions, polynomials, and functions.
The first part of that statement implies that we want the student to become adept at generation and to use it as a study tool as well an application tool.

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