TEACHING NUMERICAL ANALYSIS BASED ON MATHEMATICAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
Industry scenarios are constantly changing because of the speed of development of science and technology. This fact calls for a change in the conception of teaching in engineering careers to let graduates be prepared to perform successfully in their profession. And this change should be based on skills training.
Some of the abilities that engineering students must acquire, require the knowledge of the math foundations of the tools they apply. The professional should be able to choose, advisedly, the mathematical model that better fits the level of complexity he would deal, and so determine the concurrent parameters and their adjustments according to the problem being solved. Uncertainties related to the context must be also considered, and the engineer should be able to justify their management and treatment.
When teaching numerical analysis, many times the focus is positioned in the mechanical procedures of the methods. In this way, students do not develop many other skills during their learning, but this context can be improved. For example, different abilities may be developed by applying numerical methods to real and specific problems.
Mathematics skills are being worked on in courses of Numerical Analysis of Engineering careers at the Facultad Regional San Nicolás, Universidad Tecnológica Nacional from Argentina. For example, when teaching numerical methods for solving Initial Value Problems, different situations that arises from the differential equation that governs the movement of a pendulum are posed, using a learning object specially developed for the occasion.
This paper presents the learning object designed and the sequence of activities that will be assigned to students in order to develop specific mathematical abilities.