Colloquium Series

Title: Izhak, S. (2017). How might a sequential and non- sequential mathematics similar tasks effect on students’ knowledge evaluation, using                         automated system for formative assessment. University of Haifa, June 14th, 14:30-16:00

During the meeting Shlomi presented a research proposal of how might a sequential and non- sequential mathematics similar tasks effect on students’ knowledge evaluation, using the platform of the STEP system. He focused on construction tasks, based on the principle of submitting an example. He tried to compare between two types of activities to assess students' knowledge. The first activity included a linear collection of sequential tasks that their difficulty level increases as the student progress. The second activity included a collection of non-sequential tasks that are similar to those on the first activity and can be solved in an order according to the student decision. The main question was how the tasks should be presented, in order to get additional and valuable information regarding the student’s knowledge during the assessment process.

Title: Ayoob, H. (2017). Online assessment environment to identify conceptions, misconceptions about the relationship between area and                                 perimeter. University of Haifa, June 7th, 12:30-14:00 

At the beginning of the meeting Hassan presented the subject of his research and the research questions: How can using an interactive diagram to change polygon shapes can detect conceptions and misconceptions related to area and perimeter? And what is the connection between the image which is given by the STEP system to all the construction tasks and the ability of the students, as estimated by the Van Hila test?
To understand the research questions, he let the meeting participants experience one of the applications that were in the study and explained the others.Then he presented the data he collected and how the data was sorted, and there was a discussion about how to sort the data and select the categories. In the end, there was a summary of the study, and he received comments that greatly helped him in his research progress.

Title: Har-Carmel, Y. (2017). Reshaping Ability Grouping through Big Data. University of Haifa, April 26th, 14:30-16:00

This Article examines whether incorporating data mining technologies in education can promote equality. Following many other spheres in life, big data technologies that include creating, collecting and analyzing vast amounts of data about individuals, are increasingly being used in schools. This process has already elicited much interest among scholars, parents, and the public at large. Yet this attention has largely focused on aspects of student privacy and data protection, and overlooked the profound effects data mining may have on educational equality. The Article embarks on this task by focusing on one educational practice, namely ability grouping, that is already being transformed by educational data mining. Ability grouping is the practice of separating students into classes or tracks according to their perceived academic abilities. While some educators support the practice, arguing that it allows teachers to adjust themselves to the needs of their students, critics argue that ability grouping reinforces educational inequalities. Implicit biases that pervade educational decision-making processes result in the stratification of students from racial and ethnic minorities and students from poor families to lower tracks in which they receive inferior education and limited opportunities. Given the well documented biases in traditional ability grouping, Data Driven Ability Grouping – the use of algorithms to inform assignment decisions – may be a step in the right direction. However, as the Article demonstrates, the use of data mining technologies for ability grouping creates a whole host of unique challenges in terms of educational equality. The Article argues that traditional doctrines of equal protection will be unable to contend with the biases that data driven ability groping is likely to create. Instead, the Article offers a novel approach to the legal regulation of data driven ability grouping that involves integrating legal and technological expertise and creating equality-sensitive algorithms. The combination between legal and technological solutions can ensure that data driven ability grouping decreases biases in ability grouping and promotes educational equality.

Title: Hess-Green, R. (2017). Filtering the students' submission in STEP system in the task level and in the activity level. University of Haifa, March               29th, 14:30-16:00

In the meeting we analyzed submission of students in task in STEP system. We concentrated on the question what can we learn from submission of examples, and how can we filter them to help the teachers do formative assessment with the tasks. In the end, we talked about the user interface for teachers and task designers.

Title: Poper, P. (2017). Analysis and learning through examples as a means of quadrilaterals hierarchical relationships. University of Haifa, March                   22th, 14:30-16:00

The meeting focused on the use of the STEP assessment opportunities to explore and study elementary school students' conceptions of classification of quadrilaterals and mainly the hierarchical relationships. We (i) discussed considerations in designing task for the younger age on this topic in light of previous research on classification and examples in geometry; (ii) analyzed what can be learn from initial students' work.

Title: Nagari-Haddif, G. (2017). What we might learn from submitted students` personal example space?University of Haifa, March 15th, 14:30-                   16:00 

During the meeting we discussed the results received in experiment conducted with high school students in the content of calculus. We concentrated on the question: what we might learn from students' answers?
Relevant literature:
Smith III, J. P., Disessa, A. A., & Roschelle, J. (1994). Misconceptions reconceived: A constructivist analysis of knowledge in transition. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 3(2), 115-163.‏

Title: Cooper, J. (2017). The Development of Mathematical Knowledge for Teaching in Professional Development - Mathemeticians and Teachers                      Learning From Each Other. University of Haifa, March 8th, 10:30-12:00 

In 2009 a professor of mathematics at the Hebrew University initiated and taught a professional development (PD) course for primary school teachers. The course became very popular, and the professor recruited a team of mathematics PhD students to teach in parallel tracks. In 2012, working on my PhD, I was a participant observer in this PD. In the meeting I will show some data, discuss how my research questions and theoretical framework evolved, present some findings, and discuss implications.

Title: Bagdadi, J. (2017). Redesigning the exposition and essay tasks from e-textbook VisualMath to assessment tasks in the STEP system. University           of Haifa, March 1th, 10:30-12:00 

In the meeting we examined examples of tasks from the e-textbook VisualMath (unit Product of linear functions) and discussed the possibilities of redesigning tasks from the e-textbook to the Step system. We focused on whether tasks that are not design as assessment tasks are appropriate for the STEP system.

Title: Kantor, A. (2017). What can we learn on education from PISA?. University of Haifa, February 15th, 10:30-12:00 

The Programe for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a worldwide study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) of 15-year-old school pupils' scholastic performance on mathematics, science, and reading. Its aim is to provide comparable data with a view to enabling countries to improve their education policies and outcomes. 

The PISA test collects large amounts of data, however because of the natural complexity of the database it is not accessible to most educators and policy makers. Using data science technology, Open PISA project ( simplifies the statistical analysis and thus is a unique site that enable educators and researchers to view the database and use the information gathered in the PISA tests.

Title: Lalingkar, A. (2017). Indian Mathematics Textbooks. University of Haifa, January 18th, 10:30-12:00

Aparna introduced the structure of Indian education system in brief. Then she introduced who makes curriculum and who creates the syllabus and textbooks. How are Indian mathematics textbooks? She showed a couple of textbooks and explain her perception about the same in short. Then the group began the discussion. She filled in between the discussion more info as was needed.

Title: Lalingkar, A. (2016). Applications of Semantic Web to Education. University of Haifa, 9 November, 10:30-12:00 
Lalingkar, A
The talk summaries the research work undertaken during the PhD program at IIIT Bangalore in India. The research work is focused on exploration of various components of semantic web technology for solving some problems in education. This work began by addressing the question how we can offer help to students for open learning? By open learning we meant learning by students by using open educational resources available over the Web. While exploring notions of word lists, associated words, dictionary thesaurus, we also explored notions of semantic web like metadata, ontology and topic maps to search the open educational resources. Then we found that the content metadata can also be used for creating educational broker systems that can be used by educational institutions. While studying about students’ learning and human understanding we realized that since childhood whatever we learn, we develop an ontology in our mind and it gets evolved with continued learning. Hence, we found use of ontology for teaching would be natural and useful. Despite of several years of work in teaching problem solving, literature survey highlights issues in understanding of word problems in mathematics. Regular classroom teaching involves practice of known methods and exercises. We proposed an ontology named MONTO – machine readable ontology for teaching word problems in mathematics. Also, we implemented a proof of concept to show how we can apply it for developing a smart (Self-Monitoring Adaptive Reporting Technology) learning environment.

Title: Workshop led by Carlotta Soldano, University of Torino and Yael Luz, University of HaifaAn Inquiry game-Based assessment tasks.                                  December 16, 2015; 16:00-17:30

Assessment inquiry tasks are activities whose aim is to assess students’ inquiry. The inquiry environment is a microworld, designed as a game between the student and the computer. The theoretical background of the game lies in the works of J.Hintikka, a Finnish logician, who developed a new type of logic, called the Logic of Inquiry, based on Game Theory. The student’s inquiry is guided by an online questionnaire. The game triggers the generation of examples by both the student and the computer. To develop a winning strategy the student searches for counter examples, explores different types of examples and extreme cases and generalize examples properties. We use variation theory to assess the example space--the collection of examples generated in the game. The innovative nature of both the inquiry game and the assessment method posed the need for a Design-Based Research (DBR) methodology. In the seminar we will present the development of the inquiry-game assessment design process by highlighting key decisions that motivated the design cycles.

Osama's Lecture

Title: Demonstration led by Osama Swidan. Collaboratively Learning Mathematics Using VMT                      Software. October 21, 2015; 11:00-12:30

Virtual Math Teams (VMT) – a Math Forum that includes a Geogebra applet shared by all participants and offers them the opportunity to collaborate on mathematical tasks will be presented in my talk. Insights from our ongoing research regard the task's design in which boosting argumentative discourse and the role of teachers within VMT will discuss in my talk.

Title: Workshop led by Prof. Benjamin B. Bederson. New design trends and affordances of platforms to representations for big data in regard to                                     textbooks. Teaching and Learning Transformation Center, University of Maryland. June 10, 2015

Title: Workshop led by Hagit Weiss. Zaption, Video, Assessment. December 31, 2014; 12:30-14:30 

Title: Presentation of recent researches. July 16th, 2014; 14:00-19:00 

Title: Workshop led by Dr. Elena Naftaliev. On appreciating the cognitive complexity of school algebra: Research on algebra learning and directions of           curricular change. 
October 30th, 2013; 12:30-14:30 

Title: Workshop led by Prof. Michal Yerushalmy, University of Haifa and Prof. Daniel Chazan, University of Maryland. August 15th, 2013; 9:00-14:00