The mathematics lab was created as an integral part of our course redesign for Intermediate Algebra and College Algebra here at MUW. In 2008-2009, we were awarded a $50,000 grant to help establish a mathematics lab to improve and reinforce student learning. We use Hawkes Learning Systems Software for homework and tests in the two courses. Students in these algebra courses will usually spend one class meeting per week in the mathematics lab to practice algebra skills and complete their homework. During lab meetings, students receive one-on-one help from the instructor to reinforce what they learned in their lectures.
Throughout the fall and spring semesters, the mathematics lab is open from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Thursday, and from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon on Friday. At these times, it is staffed with student tutors who are able to assist algebra students both during and outside of their scheduled lab meetings. Student tutors have been recommended by their mathematics instructors, have demonstrated proficiency in their algebra coursework, and are eager to help their fellow students master the course content.
Our mathematics lab is now located in Reneau Hall, room 404. There are forty computer stations available. Each term, the lab serves between six and eight sections of Intermediate and College Algebra students, which amounts to anywhere from 120 to 200 students. It is a valuable resource for our algebra students, especially those with limited computer and internet access outside of campus.