A Conceptual Approach to Calculus Made Possible by Technology

Patrick W. Thompson, Cameron Byerley, Neil Hatfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Calculus reform and using technology to teach calculus are two longtime endeavors that appear to have failed to make the differences in student understanding predicted by proponents. We argue that one reason for the lack of effect is that the fundamental structure of the underlying curriculum remains unchanged. It does not seriously consider students' development of connected meanings for rate-of-change functions and accumulation functions. We report an approach to introductory calculus that takes coherence of meanings as the central criterion by which it is developed, and we demonstrate that this radical reconstruction of the ideas of calculus is made possible by its uses of computing technology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)124-147
Number of pages24
JournalComputers in the Schools
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Computer Science
  • Education
  • Library and Information Sciences


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