[Blindmath] Audio Calculus WAS Re: relearning calculus

Rasmussen, Lloyd lras at loc.gov
Thu Mar 21 08:59:01 CDT 2013

When I was at Iowa State University (1965-69) all of my electronics engineering, physics, chemistry, and higher-level calculus textbooks were recorded on tape, either by people working with the Iowa Commission for the Blind, or reading for me on campus.  The only textbook I had in braille was a first-level calculus text, by Thomas, in about 30 volumes, which had been independently transcribed in Nemeth braille by two different volunteer groups a few years earlier.  I had been using braille textbooks in Taylor code and Nemeth code up to that point.

Braille was helpful.  Whenever I came across equations or identities that looked fundamentally important, I would use my Perkins brailler and write them out.  I took a lot of braille notes in class using a slate and stylus.  I would take many tests with a brailler for working out the problem, then dictating my solution steps to a reader.  I know that being able to break down an audio reading of an equation into manageable pieces would be helpful.  I can't picture doing some of this on a refreshable one-line braille display.  But you work with the tools that are available and combine them creatively to solve problems and communicate results.

Lloyd Rasmussen, Senior Project Engineer
National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
Library of Congress   202-707-0535
The preceding opinions are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Library of Congress, NLS.

-----Original Message-----
From: Blindmath [mailto:blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of Tami Jarvis
Sent: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 5:04 PM
To: Blind Math list for those interested in mathematics
Subject: [Blindmath] Audio Calculus WAS Re: relearning calculus

Yikes! I'm still a ways away from my own relearning of calculus... Gotta get my grip on the braille codes and conceptualizing it all without seeing it. I can't imagine doing it in audio only, though! Hm...

Now I want to ask how many can manage calculus with audio courses? I'm suddenly curious. Also, I'm thinking that if I hear a bunch of other people can do it, I'll get over my own struggles with conceptualizing math and a couple of other things through audio. I prefer braille, honestly, for many things, but have a feeling I limit my own resources by whining when I'm trying to listen... /grin/


On 03/20/2013 11:20 AM, Ken Perry wrote:
> When I like to buff up I go back to the books I learned it from on rfbd.  Of
> course now I have to go to learning Ally but hey who's keeping track of all
> those things.  I can tell you they have lots of text books though and if
> you're a book learner who can learn by audible it no class needed.
> With hat said a lot of the colleges like MIT and others now have their
> courses you can audit on line.  You don't get the credits but you can watch
> the class.
> Ken
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Blindmath [mailto:blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of John G.
> Heim
> Sent: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 2:10 PM
> To: Blind Math list for those interested in mathematics
> Subject: [Blindmath] relearning calculus
> I need to relearn calculus. I have a BS in math so 30years ago I went way
> beyond calculus. But I don't remember a darn thing from back then.
> Can anyone recommend a good on-line course or perhaps just a place with good
> accessibility that offers on-line math courses?
> _______________________________________________

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