Varied ways to teach the definite integral concept
Iiris Attorps, Kjell Björk, Mirko Radic, Timo Tossavainen
More Detail


In this paper, we report on a collaborative teaching experiment based on the Learning Study model (LS model) which grounds on the Variation Theory. Until today, most of such studies have focused on the teaching and learning of elementary school mathematics; ours was carried out in undergraduate mathematics education. In the following, we discuss how we managed to promote students’ conceptual learning by varying the treatment of the object of learning (the concept of definite integral and the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus) during three lectures on an introductory course in calculus. We also discuss the challenges and possibilities of the LS model and the Variation Theory in the development of the teaching of tertiary mathematics in general. The experiment was carried out at a Swedish university. The data of the study consists of the documents of the observation of three lectures and the students’ answers to the pre- and post-tests of each lesson. The analysis of learning results revealed some critical aspects of the definite integral concept and patterns of variations that seem to be effective to a significant degree. For example, we found several possibilities to use GeoGebra to enrich students’ learning opportunities.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

INT ELECT J MATH ED, 2013, Volume 8, Issue 2-3, 81-99

Publication date: 10 Nov 2013

Article Views: 2882

Article Downloads: 4320

Open Access References How to cite this article