ENGL119 - Communication for Math
and Computer Science

 

 

 

This course was specifically designed for undergraduate students who had majored in Math or Computer Science. My thinking while designing this course was to put students into realistic writing situations they would likely find themselves in after graduating. I designed the course around three general writing activities - a proposal, an executive summary, and a research project.

The first few classes were spent discussing the societal stigma around math (and to a lesser extent computer science) and why it is that people generally boast about being innumerate, but illiteracy is seen as disgraceful. We looked at the declining math scores across Canada and how Canadian scores ranked internationally. This transitioned into the first assignment which was designing a recommendation on the teaching approach in high school math. The second assignment involved drafting an executive summary for a potential employer, and the third assignment involved creating a research project which used mathematical modeling to address a pressing social issue in Canada (some of the projects included dealing with hospital wait times, reassignment of traffic light intervals, and modeling the spread of a zombie outbreak).