Meta-univ maths course to make ‘better teachers’

Dec 04 2012, 10:37 IST
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SummaryMasters in Mathematics Education aims to open avenues for those who could not go beyond BEd

Masters in Mathematics Education aims to open avenues for those who could not go beyond BEd

Masters in Mathematics Education, the country’s first meta-university course, is expected to begin from January 3, 2013, to provide “better mathematics teachers at the school level”.

Dr Khursheed Haider, who has been teaching mathematics at Jamia Millia Islamia since 1994, said the course would open avenues for students who could not “go beyond BEd”.

“Schoolteachers with a BEd will become eligible to do a PhD after completing this course. This will open avenues for them in higher education,” he said.

He said central universities “may have to change their rules to recognise Masters in Mathematics Education as a regular course”.

Teachers of the meta-university course were of the view that the way mathematics was being currently taught at the school level needed to be changed.

“I have seen students of Class VI to Class XII who are scared of this subject. There are others who find it boring. The way mathematics is taught at schools needs to changed. There is a scarcity of good teachers, too,” Shobha Bagai, associate professor at Cluster Innovation Centre, Delhi University, said.

Bagai, who has a PhD from IIT-Delhi, joined the CIC in September last year to teach students of Masters in Mathematics Education. Earlier, she taught at Shyama Prasad Mukherjee College, Delhi University.

“The teaching experience at CIC is different from regular colleges. There it is difficult to get out of the conventional teaching mode. There is not much scope to give credit to students for coming up with out-of-the-box ideas. As a result, neither the student nor the teacher feel motivated,” she said.

The meta-university course is a mix of mathematics and education, aiming to produce better teachers.

It will correlate mathematics with real-life situations. “We do not link mathematics with everyday things. In the meta-university course, we will not be dealing with the subject in an abstract manner,” Pankaj Tyagi, the course coordinator at CIC, said. Rama Mathew, the dean at Delhi University’s Centre for Education, said the syllabus has been designed to make “general pedagogy and mathematics” go hand in hand.

“It is a semester-based course. Unlike the usual theoretical and mechanical approach, emphasis is on projects, which will not be restricted to mathematics or education. Students can take up a language proficiency course during the meta-university programme,” she said.

“We are trying to get recognition for the course so that the graduates can get jobs as post-graduate teachers at the school level. At present, they need a BEd as well as a master’s degree in the subject,” Bagai said.

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