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John Adam to Speak on 'Humor in the Classroom' for Provost's Conversations

The Provost's Conversations on Teaching and Learning, a brown bag lunch series, resumes Thursday, April 12, with a discussion led by John Adam, University Professor of Mathematics and Statistics in the College of Sciences.

Presented by the Center for Learning and Teaching (CLT), the Office of Distance Learning and Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Carol Simpson, the Conversations are open to all faculty members, and offer the opportunity to reflect and share about the teaching and learning process.

Adam, the winner of a SCHEV Outstanding Faculty Award, will speak on "Using Humor in the Classroom: Does It Aid in Understanding?" from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the Learning Commons Conference Room at Perry Library.

Can humor help when one is trying to get a point across? Adam does not claim to offer scientific evidence of the use of humor in aiding understanding, but he does have several strong opinions on the subject. He will ask: "How does one attempt to engage the 'educated public' on math-related themes when so many people confess to some level of 'math anxiety'?" Does humor help?

Adam's research interests are currently associated with theoretical problems in meteorological optics. He is co-author, together with ODU University Professor of Physics Lawrence Weinstein, of "Guesstimation: Solving the World's Problems on the Back of a Cocktail Napkin." He also is the author of "A Mathematical Nature Walk" and "Mathematics in Nature: Modeling Patterns in the Natural World." His fourth book, "X and the City," about what mathematics can tell us about city life and environments, is due out in June.

For more information about the Provost's Conversations on Teaching and Learning, visit http://clt.odu.edu/pctl. For questions contact CLT at clt@odu.edu or 3-4252. To register, visit http://clt.odu.edu.

This article was posted on: April 9, 2012

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