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Developing algebraic thinking

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This module is for you if you are interested in developing your knowledge and understanding of the learning of algebra particularly at Key Stages 2–4. It integrates development of the core ideas of algebra with relevant pedagogical constructs and principles, and will extend your awareness of how people learn and use algebra. There is no formal examination: assessment is based on three tutor-marked assignments and an end-of-module assessment. In order to complete the module assessments, you will need access to learners of algebra at Key Stages 2–4, which could include adult learners. 

Modules at Level 3 assume that you are suitably prepared for study at this level. If you want to take a single module to satisfy your career development needs or pursue particular interests, you don’t need to start at Level 1 but you do need to have adequately prepared yourself for OU study in some other way. Check with our Student Registration & Enquiry Service to make sure that you are sufficiently prepared.

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28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£570.00
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Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£570.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£1115.00
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Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£570.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£570.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£995.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£1316.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£1316.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£570.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.
Start End Fee Register
28 Mar 2015 Sep 2015
£1316.00
Choose country above

Registration opens on 30/04/14

See below for information about part time tuition fee loans available for study towards a qualification.

This course is expected to start for the last time in April 2017.

*Fees may vary by country.

What you will study

The module is designed to:

  • develop your algebraic thinking
  • raise your awareness of the importance of learners expressing generality for themselves
  • provide experience of different teaching approaches and the learning opportunities they afford
  • develop your awareness of, and facility with, ICT in the learning and teaching of algebra
  • develop your knowledge and understanding of the mathematics which underpins Key Stage 2–4.

The module consists of four blocks of work. Each block has four chapters, which have recurring themes:

  • expressing generality
  • mathematical powers and themes
  • symbol use
  • use of technology.

Each section starts with a ‘quickie’ task, and then uses tasks for you to work on to introduce the topic.  Thus the module is ‘practical’ in that it requires you to practise algebraic thinking. There are more tasks than can be completed in a first pass through the book, because it is intended to serve as a career-long resource.

Mathematical topics include: word-problems; figurate numbers; interplay between graphs, tables and formulae; introducing symbols; and reasoning with algebra.

You will learn

Successful study of this module should enhance your skills in:

  • communicating mathematical ideas clearly and succinctly
  • explaining mathematical ideas to others.

Entry

The module is open to anyone aged 18 or over, though it is intended particularly for teachers, teaching assistants, home-school parents and special educational needs coordinators.

Your own knowledge of algebra should be at, or above, the level of a B on GCSE maths, or you could have studied Mathematical thinking in schools (ME620) or the discontinued modules ME624 or MEXR624.

We recommend that you study Mathematical thinking in schools (ME620) before this module as it provides a useful background in mathematics education and you are more likely to successfully complete this Level 3 module.

If you are considering taking ME625 alongside another OU module, please bear in mind that the workload for this one alone is around 12 hours a week.

In order to complete the module assessments, you will need regular access to at least one other learner of algebra, with whom to work on approximately two tasks a week. 

If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the Module Regulations and the Student Regulations which are available on our Essential documents website.

If you have a disability

The study materials are available in Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). Some Adobe PDF components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader and mathematical, scientific, and foreign language materials may be particularly difficult to read in this way. Our Services for disabled students website has the latest information about availability.

There are many diagrams in the module book and printed material, and associated computer work, which may present a challenge to visually-impaired students. 

If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Visit our Services for disabled students website for more information, including:

  • help to determine your study requirements and how to request the support that you need  
  • Disabled Students' Allowances (DSAs)
  • using a computer for OU study
  • equipment and other support services that we offer
  • examination arrangements
  • how to contact us for advice and support both before you register and while you are studying.

Study materials

What's included

Module text and module guide, bookmark and website.

You will need

It would be very helpful, but not compulsory, to have access to a graphics calculator – the recommended models are the TI-83 Plus or TI-84 plus.

You require access to the internet at least once a week during the module to download module resources and to keep up to date with module news.

Computing requirements

You will need a computer with internet access to study this course as it includes online activities, which you can access using a web browser.

  • If you have purchased a new desktop or laptop computer since 2007 you should have no problems completing the online activities.
  • If you’ve got a netbook, tablet or other mobile computing device check our Technical requirements section.
  • If you use an Apple Mac you will need OS X 10.6 or later.

You can also visit the Technical requirements section for further computing information including the details of the support we provide.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

You will have a tutor who will help you with the study material and mark and comment on your written work, and whom you can ask for advice and guidance. There will be individual telephone tutorials rather than face-to-face group tutorials, and some tutors may offer online tutorials.

Contact our Student Registration & Enquiry Service if you want to know more about study with The Open University before you register.

Assessment

The assessment details for this module can be found in the facts box above.

You can choose whether to submit your tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) on paper or online through the eTMA system. You may want to use the eTMA system for some of your assignments but submit on paper for others. This is entirely your choice.

The end-of-module assessment takes the form of a 3000-word tutor-marked assignment. You will be given more detailed information when you begin the module.

The end-of-module assessment (EMA) must be submitted online.

Future availability

The details given here are for the module that starts in April 2014. We expect it to be available once a year.

How to register

To register a place on this course return to the top of the page and use the Click to register button.

Student Reviews

“This was a very useful, interesting and challenging module that completed my Graduate Diploma in Mathematics Education. The earlier modules ...”
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“Loved the course!!! It helped so much with the new initiative of rich tasks in the classroom and has provided ...”
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Distance learning

The Open University is the world’s leading provider of flexible, high quality distance learning. Unlike other universities we are not campus based. You will study in a flexible way that works for you whether you’re at home, at work or on the move. As an OU student you’ll be supported throughout your studies – your tutor or study adviser will guide and advise you, offer detailed feedback on your assignments, and help with any study issues. Tuition might be in face-to-face groups, via online tutorials, or by phone.

For more information read Distance learning explained.

Are you already an OU student ? Go to StudentHome for information on choosing your next module.
Course facts
About this course:
Course code ME625
Credits 30
OU Level 3
SCQF level 10
FHEQ level 6
Course work includes:
3 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
End-of-module assessment
No residential school

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