Artof Problem Solving

Artof Problem Solving-36
We weave these together in our online school, though each can be used individually — and several are free.

We weave these together in our online school, though each can be used individually — and several are free.In the online school — which most students take in addition to their regular math classes — students meet weekly for a 75- to 120-minute conversation with instructors.Our online community has over 300,000 members, about half of whom are international.

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We build the tools we wish we’d had when we were students. Where did the idea come from, and how did you wind up getting started?

RR: As I was finishing college, back in 1993 to ’94, I co-wrote a two-volume series, , for students preparing for math competitions.

The standards, like most of our K-12 education system, by necessity must target mathematical literacy, not mastery — they ensure that students reach a certain baseline level of understanding.

Ao PS’ target is different, it’s that of universities: the mastery required to be a STEM professional.

Between classes, they read textbooks, watch videos, collaborate with instructors and other students in our online community, and tackle sets of difficult problems.

Some of the problems require writing complete solutions on which students receive feedback on the accuracy and presentation of their work. RR: We have those modern elements — gamification, video, and our real-time classes are interactive because all the students can “talk” at any time.Rick Hess: First off, what exactly is the Art of Problem Solving (Ao PS)?Richard Rusczyk: Ao PS develops educational resources for eager math students, including textbooks, an online school, in-person learning centers, and a constellation of online applications.These texts are probably still the most widely used math contest prep books. I left teaching after a semester and traded bonds for a while.I left grad school after a couple months because I wanted to teach high school. Then the internet came along, and I realized I could build a school online and let selection bias draw the students I could best serve: those who thirst for a greater challenge than they’re finding in their classrooms.Richard Rusczyk is the founder of the Art of Problem Solving (Ao PS), a math curriculum and online learning community that supports students who excel in math.In the early 1990s, Richard started Ao PS as a book series; it has grown into a 300,000-member online community with classes, video lessons, and an adaptive learning system.Students who work through our curriculum usually find themselves extremely well-prepared for their regular school classes. RR: Some of our instructors are university professors or high-school teachers.They’re also far less likely to be shell-shocked when they take math or science classes in college, which is where we first see the gap between literacy- and mastery-focused educations as legions of students leave STEM-related majors. Some are grad students at schools like MIT, Harvard, and Stanford.RH: How many students do you serve, and who are they?RR: This year, we expect over 15,000 in our online school and over 3,000 in our in-person learning centers.


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