Other Information

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Math Utilities



desmos.com | Beautiful, Free Math


TI-84 Resources

Atomic Learning - TI-84 Silver Edition Calculator Training (http://www.atomiclearning.com/k12/en/ti_84)

TI Graphing Calculator Guide Books

Wabbit TI (https://wabbit.codeplex.com/)

Smart Phone Math Apps

Android Apps


MathLab Graphing Calculator


 iPhone Apps

Good Grapher

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This course is a work-in progress, adapted by faculty from Pierce College (Lakewood, WA) from Quantway Version 1.0, developed by the Charles A. Dana Center at The University of Texas at Austin under sponsorship of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

This course is a developmental-level course, intended to prepare students for non-STEM college-level math courses, like math in society, and perhaps statistics or math for elementary educators.  It takes a highly contextual, highly active-learning approach to mathematics.  The student lessons won't make a lot of sense by themselves - make sure you look at the Instructor lessons in the Instructor Resources folder; they are essential to understanding the lessons.

Some of the original material has been changed by us.  The original versions are available via the Dropbox link in the Instructor Resources folder, as well as the Word files of our revisions.

Note that most of the homework in this course is from the original QW OCEs, and is not algorithmic.

There are a handful of links in this course that did not come through when I transferred the course - I'll try to get those repaired eventually.

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Writing about Quantitative Information


You might be surprised that you are asked to write short responses to questions in this course. Writing in a math class? This course emphasizes writing for the following two reasons:

  • Writing is a learning tool. Explaining things such as the meaning of data, how you calculated the data, or how you know your answer is correct deepens your own understanding of the material.

  • Communication is an important skill in quantitative literacy. Quantitative information is used widely in today’s world in products such as reports, news articles, publicity materials, advertising, and grant applications.

Understanding the Task

One important strategy in writing is to make sure you understand the task. In this course, your tasks will be questions in assignments, but in other situations the task might be a question on a report form, instructions from your employer, or a goal that you set for yourself. To begin to write successfully, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is the topic of the writing task?

  • What is the task telling me to do? Some examples are given below:

    • Describe how you found the answer.

    • Explain why you think you have the right answer.

    • Reflect on the process of coming up with the answer.

    • Make a prediction about the next data point.

    • Compare two data points or the answers to two parts of the problem.

  • What information am I given to help me with the task?

A Basic Writing Principle for Quantitative Information

Writing Principle: Use specific and complete information. The reader should understand what you are trying to say even if he or she has not read the question or writing prompt. This includes

  • information about context, and

  • quantitative information.

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Understanding Visual Displays of information

Data are increasingly presented in a variety of forms intended to interest you and invite you to think about the importance of these data and how they might affect your lives. The following are some of the types of common displays:

  • pie charts,

  • scatterplots,

  • histograms and bar graphs,

  • line graphs,

  • tables, and

  • pictographs. 

Strategy for Understanding

A strategy for understanding visual displays of information is to ask questions about the displays.

What questions should you ask yourself when you study a visual display of information?

  • What is the title of the chart or graph?

  • What question is the data supposed to answer? (For example: How many males versus females exercise daily?)

  • How are the columns and rows labeled? How are the vertical and horizontal axes labeled?

  • Select one number or data point and ask, “What does this mean?” 

Use the following chart to help you understand what some basic types of visual displays of information tell you and what questions they usually answer.

This looks like a …

This visual display is usually used to …

For example, it can be used to show …

pie chart

  • show the relationships between different parts compared to a whole.

  • how time is used in a 24-hour cycle.

  • how money is distributed.

  • how something is divided up.

line graph

  • show trends over time.

  • compare trends of two different items or measurements.

  • what seems to be increasing.

  • what is decreasing.

  • how the cost of gas has increased in the last
    10 years.

  • which of these foods (milk, steak, cookies, eggs) has risen most rapidly in price compared to the others.

histogram or bar graph

  • compare data in different categories.

  • show changes over time.

  • how a population is broken up into different age categories.

  • how college tuition rates are changing over time.


  • organize data to make specific values easy to read.

  • break data up into overlapping categories.

  • the inflation rates over a period of years.

  • how a population is broken into males and females of different age categories.

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