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WMEAL: WME for Adult Learners


Web Mathematics Education for Adults (WMEA) is a series of online modules aimed at helping adults re-learn concepts of mathematics required for the real world. The pages are written in a style appropriate for a more mature audience. The basic philosophy of WMEA is that users are adults, who may already know aspects of mathematics from their previous jobs and life experiences. Users are asked questions that are simple to comprehend, but requires complex analysis of mathematics to solve correctly.

An example of such a question is: "What is the difference in area between a 52" television (aspect ratio 4:3) and a 65" high-definition television (aspect ratio 16:9)?" The solution to this problem is an easy problem to visualize, but solving it requires the Pythagorean theorem combined with algebraic methods on the height and width. Online manipulatives and a linked glossary are provided to assist viewers with overcoming learning roadblocks.

Problems gradually increase in task difficulty, allowing users to have successes and build self-confidence. The online manipulatives spark and keep the adult learners' interest better than a textbook or worksheet, keeping them engaged longer. The question content allows users to apply their life experience in re-learning math. The site provides feedback in a self-assessment manner, checking their work while reinforcing the structure behind achieving the correct solution. Based on the literature, providing hands-on manipulatives in this fashion will help adult learners improve their mathematical understanding. Users can also gain experience with current tools in programming to represent mathematical ideas.

Programming languages such as Python and markup languages such as Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) allow for easy creation of geometric objects in a two-dimensional coordinate space. WMEA provides basic tutorials in real-world programming tools that incorporate elements of mathematics.

WMEAL Site for the Ohio Mathematics Workshop

The WMEAL Site is where the ideas and techniques of WMEAL are put to practice for the returning workforce in Ohio.