Mathematical Colloquium 
An InquiryOriented Approach to the Teaching and Learning of Linear Algebra 

By  Megan Wawro 
From  Department of Mathematics Virginia Tech 
When  Friday, December 12, 2014 10:00 am 
Where  Weber 223 
Abstract  The purpose of this talk is to provide an overview of my research program investigating the teaching and learning of introductory linear algebra, which is grounded in a classroombased design research framework. The goals of my current project include producing curricular materials for linear algebra that promote a studentcentered, inquiryoriented approach to the teaching and learning of introductory linear algebra. Based on the instructional design theory of Realistic Mathematics Education, the curricular materials consist of a set of experientially real tasks that allow for active student engagement in the guided reinvention of key mathematical ideas and that leverage students' intuitive knowledge towards the development of more formal ways of reasoning about those mathematical ideas. It also develops instructional support materials that convey the instructional designers' intention without being overly prescriptive and that provide information about how students think and learn within the task sequences. I will illustrate this research by highlighting some results regarding student understanding of span and linear independence and the associated task sequence. 