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MathsEdge to equip learners with research skills

It’s a flagship project in the College of Science, Engineering and Technology (CSET) developing capacity in young learners in various areas relating to Mathematics. MathsEdge is also focusing on equipping learners with research skills by enabling them to see that mathematics is a real life subject. By demystifying the subject, MathsEdge is aiming to improve both the learning process and research skills of students.

MathsEdge community engagement buddies from Bokgoni Technical High school

On 16 October 2012 the MathsEdge team embarked on a mission to develop the research capacity of a group of grade 10 and 11 students of Bokgoni Technical High School in Atteridgville. This was the first visit to engage with the students after sessions of planning that involved several meetings with the principal and physical science and mathematics educators.

Learners were initiated into basic skills of research by the MathsEdge team members, who also have wide experience in research. Led by Dr Eeva Rapoo, Department of Statistics, the team discussed LOGIC, which is the theme of the project, with the enthusiastic learners. In this project, the learners are required to identify a problem within their school or community and explore and explain the means through which such problems can be solved by applying their classroom knowledge of linear algebra, geometry, statistics, probability and other topics.

They are expected to achieve this by using resources at their exposure including the internet on their mobile phones, community services such as the people living there and libraries. They were informed that in conducting their research, putting contemporary issues like greening the environment into perspective was not an option, rather something that they have to be mindful of.

This project of equipping learners with research skills is in its pilot stage and is expected to run up to 2013 when the full scale project will be rolled out with a bigger number of learners. The expectations are great and promises learners fun as they deepen their knowledge on the application of mathematics in science, engineering and technology.

Back, Dr. Justin Munganga (Department of Mathematics, Unisa), Dr. Eeva Rapoo (Department of Statistics, Unisa), Muchengetwa Suwisa (Department of Statistics, Unisa) and front, Prof. John Oloami (Department of Statistics, Unisa), Patricia Moeketsi (educator at Bokgoni Technical High School), Dr Gosekwang Moremedi (Department of Mathematics, Unisa), Timoty Mathopa (School Principal at Bokgoni Technical High School), Musa Mackeke (Physical Science educator at Bokgoni Technical High School) and Evelyn Njurai (Department of Mathematics, Unisa Mathematics)

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