LEARNING DIFFICULTIES ENCOUNTERED IN THE TEACHING AND LEARNING OF LINEAR PROGRAMMING.
, Montreal, Canada: Concordia University Abstract
This thesis studies some aspects of the learning components of linear programming in two variables. It incorporates a teaching experiment that uses an arithmetic approach to introduce linear programming. A specific strategy of identifying the optimum point is then emphasized to enhance a relational understanding of the corner point theorem. The subjects chosen for the study are four pre-commerce students at Concordia University. This group of students is selected because the subject matter they learn in linear programming comprises the learning components under study.
The subjects’ prerequisite knowledge is gauged by their performance on a pre-test. A semi standardized interview is conducted to follow up the difficulties and errors that emerge during the teaching to explain the underlying causes of the difficulties. The subjects solve one problem independently during the experiment and five others in a pre-test designed to gauge the effect of the strategy on reinforcing the understanding of the corner point theorem. Examination scripts (174) including those of the subjects are analyzed for potential difficulties and errors to provide extra data of the frequency of occurrence of the difficulties and errors. Ten text books chosen at random are also analyzed to find out how they might help alleviate or add to the difficulties