tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post1508403395094089418..comments2022-08-07T01:05:01.413-07:00Comments on God Plays Dice: On the inclusion of solutions in textbooksMichael Lugohttp://www.blogger.com/profile/15671307315028242949noreply@blogger.comBlogger7125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-3069186696786016792011-04-15T21:24:30.515-07:002011-04-15T21:24:30.515-07:00I can understand why some people might not put sol...I can understand why some people might not put solutions to all the problems in their books. However, as a student I would find this rather helpful, especially when first learning a topic.<br /><br />If providing solutions is out of the question, I would propose a system similar to that used by The Art and Craft of Problem Solving. Here the author provides hints to the solution, and the usefulness of the hint depends greatly on how well you understand the material.Nickhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/17888113739874713345noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-8564226909193326102011-04-13T11:59:37.430-07:002011-04-13T11:59:37.430-07:00In my experience, the most frequent feedback from ...In my experience, the most frequent feedback from students about courses in general is that they wish the prof would have provided more examples in class. Similarly, the most frequent complaints about textbooks involve those that have no answers to exercises. <br /><br />I think that solved problems (or worked examples) in textbooks are very useful to almost all students, but failing that, at least provide answers to all exercises. <br /><br />That full solutions and answers to all exercises are typically not included is purely to support our current (broken and inhumane) system of evaluating students.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-44777150625309469852011-04-13T03:30:57.395-07:002011-04-13T03:30:57.395-07:00I couldn't agree more on providing solutions a...I couldn't agree more on providing solutions along with representative problems if the purpose of the text is education.<br /><br />If solutions "are left as an exercise to the reader" then maybe the ratio of "new concepts" (from the perspective of the student) to "available pages" is excessive and it is expected from the student to have the same drive and passion about a subject as the author. <br /><br />But books are written by people who are at a different mind set than students. The author is trying to compartmentalize, organise, provide structure, while the student is more like "OK, here are N different new concepts, how do they work with each other? What do they really mean? How can i make use of them? How do they fit with the bigger picture?"<br /><br />So, worked out problems and engaging unsolved ones of course, are a sort of playground where you can familiarize yourself with the subject and hopefully at some point feel confident to tackle never before seen problems.AAhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/10139788482239218535noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-79456865232032788052011-04-12T18:52:32.407-07:002011-04-12T18:52:32.407-07:00Just to clarify, Sachi, I didn't mean that you...Just to clarify, Sachi, I didn't mean that you shouldn't be trying to find bootleg solutions manuals. (I'm ignoring copyright issues here.) I meant that the student <i>taking a class</i> who looks for such things is often the one trying to avoid doing homework.Michael Lugohttps://www.blogger.com/profile/01950197848369071260noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-65756941672948078582011-04-12T18:49:38.697-07:002011-04-12T18:49:38.697-07:00*raises hand* I'm guilty of trying to find a b...*raises hand* I'm guilty of trying to find a bootleg solutions manual...though unsuccessfully. I am an undergraduate and all throughout high school (and even this year because my college doesn't have a very strong math department), I worked through various texts in linear algebra, group theory, dynamics, number theory, and topology, and having solutions to problems is useful when I get really stuck, but books rarely had them.Anonymousnoreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-47391461050212828312011-04-12T17:06:56.332-07:002011-04-12T17:06:56.332-07:00First reference to "Moore method" I'...First reference to "Moore method" I've heard in many years. My mom took classes from him at UT, Austin. And I had a topology class at NMT that was sort of similar to Moore method in that the class was almost entirely grad students giving proofs on the blackboard. A difference was that Dr. Arterburn assigned specific problems to the different students. He gave the better students harder problems. The text was Dugundji, "Topology".CarlBrannenhttps://www.blogger.com/profile/17180079098492232258noreply@blogger.comtag:blogger.com,1999:blog-264226589944705290.post-5109527147491798742011-04-12T15:21:26.495-07:002011-04-12T15:21:26.495-07:00My undergraduate topology textbook had solutions t...My undergraduate topology textbook had solutions to most of the exercises in the back. Unfortunately, my classmates and I were unable to make heads nor tails of the most solutions, such was the gap between our understanding of the material and the expositional level of the solutions. Our professor eventually decided that the presence of the solutions was a hinderance to our learning, so he confiscated all of our textbooks, and taught the remainder of the course by Moore method.christopherdruphttps://www.blogger.com/profile/13153945213923468590noreply@blogger.com