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Department of Mathematics
Faculty of Natural Sciences
Constantine the Philosopher University
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Invited lectures
Speaker 1:
Assoc. Prof. RNDr. Vojtech Bálint, CSc., The Faculty of Operation and Economics of Transport and Communications, University in Zilina

Vojtech Bálint is working as an associate professor in the Department of Quantitative Methods and Economic Information where he is also in position of the head of department. His research interests are Discrete Mathematics and Mathematics Education.

Lecture: SOME FAMOUS PROBLEMS OF DISCRETE GEOMETRY

Annotation. Annotation. Newton numbers, Kepler’s conjecture and some packing and structural problems will be discussed in the lecture.

Speaker 2:
Assoc. Prof. Tomáš Vetrík, PhD., Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics of the University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa

Tomáš Vetrík is a mathematician working at the Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics of the University of the Free State in South Africa. His research area is Graph theory and his favourite research problems include the study of metric dimension of graphs, graph indices, distances in graphs and various topics in extremal graph theory.

Tomáš completed his MSc study at the Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra in 2004 and his PhD study at the Slovak University of Technology in 2008. During his PhD study he obtained prestigious fellowships for a one semester long research stay at the Vienna University of Technology and a 2 semesters long PhD stay at the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. He moved to South Africa in 2010 after the completion of his postdoctoral research at the Bandung Institute of Technology in Indonesia.

Tomáš Vetrík has published about 30 research articles. Currently he supervises 3 PhD students and a postdoctoral researcher. His other hobby is travelling and visiting universities. Tomáš has visited about 70 different countries.

Lecture: SELECTED TOPICS IN THE EXTREMAL GRAPH THEORY

Annotation. Some specific problems of Graph Theory of will be discussed in the lecture.

Speaker 3:
Prof. RNDr. Jozef Fulier, PhD., Faculty of Natural Sciences Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra, Nitra, Slovak Republic

Jozef Fulier is an Professor in the Department of Mathematics of Faculty of Natural Sciences Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra. He teaches Mathematical Analysis and History of Mathematics for students of mathematics teaching and PhD students in Theory of Mathematics Education. His research interests are Calculus, Theory of Differential Equations, Mathematics Education and History of Mathematics.

Lecture: SOME ASPECTS OF THE RELATION BETWEEN THE HISTORY OF MATHEMATICS AND MATHEMATICS EDUCATION: THE CASE OF INFINITE SERIES

Annotation. In the lecture we will present the importance of history of mathematics for mathematics education at all levels of education. The goal is to promote awareness of the relevance of the history of mathematics for mathematics education in the case of the theory of infinite series because the concept of an infinite sum is mysterious and intriguing. This connection is beneficial for mathematics teachers as well as mathematicians. We will also discuss the importance of the history of mathematics as a significant part of the development of cultures.

Speaker 4:
Assoc. Prof. Freyja Hreinsdóttir, Fil. dr., Faculty of Teacher Education, University of Iceland

Freyja Hreinsdóttir is an associate professor of mathematics at the Faculty of Teacher Education, School of Education. She teaches mathematics for teacher students and engineering students and is a chair of the department of Compulsory School Teacher Education. She is the chair of the Nordic GeoGebra Network, http://nordic.geogebra.no/ and the Icelandic GeoGebra Institute. Her main research interests are commutative algebra and the use of ICT in the teaching and learning of mathematics.

Lecture: PISA 2012 – PERFORMANCE IN MATHEMATICS IN ICELAND AND SCHOOL SIZE

Annotation. The mathematics performance of Icelandic pupils in the PISA survey has been of great concern, in particular since the performance in 2012 was worse than in 2003. Examining mathematics performance in the PISA 2003 survey in Iceland reveals that higher performance was reached in large schools than in small schools. The results in the largest school-group in PISA 2012 were again significantly better than in other school-sizes, 504 points on average against 493 points in Iceland as a whole. A questionnaire was sent in 2014 to all mathematics teachers in 30 schools of different sizes. This was followed up by a telephone interview asking the teachers about their education, experience as teachers, how many years they had taught the group participating in PISA 2012, the textbooks they used for the PISA 2012 participants etc. The results did not reveal much difference in the teachers’ educational background but it seemed to make a difference whether the teachers only taught mathematics and if the teacher had taught the particular students during the preceding years.

Speaker 5:
Assoc. Prof. Mette Susanne Andresen, Ph.D., Department of Mathematics, University of Bergen, Norway

Mette Andresen is associate professor in mathematics education. Since she came to Norway from Denmark in 2011, she has taught mathematics education in the Masters’programme in mathematics education. She is head of the NoRME board, and she has participated in EU projects PRIMAS, Fibonacci, KEyCoMath and others, now partner in the EEA project ’ Improving Quality of higher Education based on Development of Multilateral Institutional Cooperation’. Research interests are the use of ICT, IBL and modelling in upper secondary school mathematics, teachers’ professional development, and the interplay between theory and practice in mathematics education. In Denmark, she had positions as upper secondary school teacher in mathematics and chemistry, lecturer in mathematics teacher education, assistant professor in mathematics education at Danish University of Education, and director of the National Knowledge Centre NAVIMAT 2008 – 2011.

Lecture: STUDENTS' CREATIVITY IN PROBLEM SOLVING

Annotation. This lecture will report results from a research project carried out in upper secondary school in collaboration with eight Norwegian mathematics teachers. The project concentrated on the development of students' inquiry, creativity and intellectual independence while they were working in a problem solving setting in mathematics classes. The teachers prepared and conducted teaching experiments for the inquiry of the students strategies. Episodes of creativity will be presented and discussed in the lecture based on excerpts from the data. Works of Schoenfeld, Polya and Cobb et al. and Johan Lithner form the theoretical basis for the project.

Speaker 6:
Assoc. prof. Slagjana Jakimovik, PhD., Faculty of Pedagogy "St. Kliment Ohridski", Ss Cyril & Methodius University in Skopje, R. Macedonia

Slagjana Jakimovik is an associate professor of Mathematics at the Faculty of Pedagogy “St. Kliment Ohridski”, Ss Cyril & Methodius University in Skopje, R. Macedonia. She teaches mathematics and statistics to prospective primary school teachers and pre-school teachers. Her research interests include mathematics education, teacher education, topology and dynamical systems.

Lecture: FUTURE TEACHERS' BELIEFS: MATHEMATICS AS A PROCESS OF INQUIRY VS MATHEMATICS AS A SET OF RULES

Annotation. Mathematics education of primary school teachers and pre-school teachers plays a vital role in preparing teachers to support the development of mathematical thinking of young learners. Although mathematics content knowledge (MCK) is a major component of the professional body of knowledge required for teaching mathematics, teachers’ professional beliefs on what is mathematics and how mathematics is learned have a significant mediating effect on teachers’ success in providing genuine opportunities to learn meaningful mathematics. Analysis of prospective teachers’ beliefs on the nature of mathematics and on mathematics learning when they enter and before they graduate from initial teacher education is the research goal of the study. The results reveal a difference between the self-professed beliefs of the students and the approaches they used to respond to mathematics items. These findings point to the need for making provisions within initial teacher education to help future teachers in developing mathematical knowledge for teaching and consistent professional beliefs.
 
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