For Students….

With older students in mind including those about to enter higher education, there are many free resources available to support students in their study of Mathematics.
Note that a new blog aimed at students is now available.

Calculus workbook from Plymouth University

There are many sources of excellent notes online, a page on Mathematics for Students – Notes has an excellent collection. 

Students going on to study Mathematics degrees have a look at Kevin Houston’s ‘How not to get a good mathematics degree‘ and ‘How to get a good mathematics degree‘. He also has provided a pdf file you can download: 10 Ways to Think Like a Mathematician. Kevin Houston works at the University of Leeds.

I would advise students of any subject to learn to use WolframAlpha. Suppose you wish to do some revision on techniques for differentiation for example – ask WolframAlpha to differentiate x2sinx, and the derivative will be returned with possible working available if  ‘Show steps’ is selected. (Further Calculus examples). WolframAlpha provides an excellent way to check your work.

WolframAlpha will plot graphs, there are many other free and excellent online graphing tools, see the Desmos Graphing Calculator.

Thinking longer term – have a look at the excellent Maths Careers site.

Mathematics Crosswords

crossword created with Eclipse software

Crosswords provide a good way to improve Mathematical vocabulary. There are various resources available online including puzzles to play and software to create your own puzzles.

The MathsGoodies site includes some free interactive crossword puzzles.

A variation on crosswords are crossnums where the clues are all sums, see for example a good selection of Crossums from Teacher Resources on Line (a site developed by the late Frank Tapson, who worked with CIMT which is well worth exploring). This collection includes a blank template so students can create their own puzzles.

Make your own crosswords with excellent free software – Eclipse. The grid shown in the image above was generated by the Eclipse program. Click on the image to download the crossword and solutions as a pdf. The program is very straightforward to use and includes a clear tutorial section. See the Reference page for inspiration for crossword clues. Transum created this interactive crossword with the software from Eclipse. (The crossword is in fact one of the resources on the excellent ‘Starter of the Day‘ site.)

Crossword activities are available on the Vocabulary and Crossnumber page, one of a series of pages on Puzzles and Games.

Words with WolframAlpha

WolframAlpha can be used for vocabulary, for example, try typing ‘plus’ into WolframAlpha.

Note that WolframAlpha has assumed plus is a character but you can choose to refer to a mathematical definition or a word (or an internet architecture topic). Choosing word will not only give definitions but a wealth of other information that you would not find in a dictionary such as the first known use of the word, frequency of use, rhyming words and much more!

Other sites of interest for Mathematics vocabulary can be found on the Reference page. If you are interested in the first known use of mathematical words then try Jeff Miller’s ‘Earliest Known Uses of  Some of the Words of Mathematics‘.