Identifier

etd-07092009-093842

Degree

Master of Natural Sciences (MNS)

Department

Natural Sciences (Interdepartmental Program)

Document Type

Thesis

Abstract

In this thesis we approach the concept of Rate of Change as a mathematical model, and we apply it to a few physics problems. Its main goal is to help students to bridge concepts form mathematical models and the real life applications. We begin with a review of measurements, proportionality and similarity based on Euclidean geometry; then, we review linear and affine functions, and we introduce a mathematical model for the average and instantaneous rate of change. This mathematical model is applied to problems from physics following the four representations of functions: verbal, algebraic, tabular and graphical. By doing so, the main point is to show a unifying theme for mathematics and sciences, and the strong connections between the two. This thesis is intended to be a guide for teachers and students in Algebra and Calculus classes. The thesis consists of three main parts: a review of Euclidian geometry concepts and functions related to proportional reasoning, average rate of change and instantaneous rate of change with applications in physics problems.

Date

2009

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

James Madden

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