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Title: The Mathematics Learning Support Centre at Loughborough University: staff and student perceptions of mathematical difficulties
Authors: Perkin, Glynis
Pell, Godfrey
Croft, Tony
Keywords: Engineering education
Issue Date: 2007
Publisher: © HEA Engineering Subject Centre Loughborough University
Citation: PERKIN, G., PELL, G. and CROFT, T., 2007. The Mathematics Learning Support Centre at Loughborough University: staff and student perceptions of mathematical difficulties. Engineering Education - Journal of the Higher Education Academy Subject Centre, 2 (1), pp. 47 - 58.
Abstract: From a census of academic and academic related staff in the School of Mathematics at Loughborough University, most of whom work in the Mathematics Learning Support Centre, and a survey of the students who frequently use this facility we investigate the difficulties that are encountered with mathematics and the growing need for support with this subject. This paper reports the raw data results obtained from a selection of the questions that were posed. Responses were obtained from 29 mathematics staff and 37 students from mathematics, engineering and physics departments. We detail findings from the questions pertaining to perceptions of pre-knowledge, areas of difficulty and reasons for using the Centre. The results show that in some cases the opinions and perceptions of staff and students are almost diametrically opposite and in some cases students are unaware that the difficulties they are experiencing stem from a lack of fluency in areas of basic mathematics. What is also shown is that staff need to be aware of the mathematical content contained in the wide range of qualifications that students may enter university with. These findings have important consequences for those involved with mathematics education in the Higher Education sector and will also prove informative for universities who provide similar support.
Description: This article was published in the open access journal, Engineering Education - Journal of the Higher Education Academy Engineering Subject Centre [© HEA Engineering Subject Centre Loughborough University, available under a creative commons licence].
Version: Published
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/9461
Publisher Link: http://www.engsc.ac.uk/journal/index.php/ee/article/view/57/88
ISSN: 1750-0044
Appears in Collections:Published Articles (HEA Engineering Subject Centre)
Published Articles (Mathematics Education Centre)
Published Articles (engCETL)

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