The transition from scientific calculators to computer algebra systems in one educational system

Roger Brown
rogerb@ibo.org
IBO, Dept. of Education
University of Bath
Claverton Down
UK

Abstract

The Danish Upper Secondary School Leaving Examination includes the 3 year A level mathematics course which for the first time in 2001 allowed schools to chose to allow their students to complete their mathematics examinations with a CAS calculator. In 2000 and for those not using a CAS calculator in 2001 it was assumed that all students would use a graphing calculator. The introduction of the use of CAS calculators into assessment was the culmination of 3 years of work by the ministry of education with pilot schools.

This paper will explore the changes that have occurred in assessment from the use of scientific calculators in assessment through the introduction of graphic calculators and then finally to the use of hand held computer algebra systems. Particular reference to the style of questions used both in the pilot phase and the first examination session of the computer algebra questions will be considered. The opportunities for further development of examination questions with the availability of CAS will also be considered.


© ATCM, Inc. 2001.