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MERLOT II


    

Peer Review


Abstract Algebra Online Study Guide

by John Beachy
 

Ratings

Overall Rating:

5 stars
Content Quality: 5 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 5 stars
Reviewed: Jun 12, 2008 by Mathematics
Overview: These online notes are intended for students who are working through the textbook Abstract Algebra by Beachy and Blair. The notes are focused on solved problems, and will help students learn how to do proofs as well as computations. There are also some "lab" questions on groups, based on a Java applet Groups15 written by John Wavrik of UCSD.
Learning Goals: This site provides additional instruction in Abstract Algebra. Its examples and linked java-applet tools allow students to reinforce and refresh their understanding of the topics covered.
Target Student Population: Abstract Algebra students.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: A course in Abstract Algebra is recommended.
Type of Material: Reference and tutorial.
Recommended Uses: This material can be used as an online textbook or as a reference guide.
Technical Requirements: It requires a "Java-enabled" browser.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: This site contains a study guide that is intended for students who are working through the Third Edition of the Abstract Algebra textbook by J. Beachy and D. Blair. The notes are focused on solved problems, and their main goal is to help students learn how to do proofs, as well as computations. The link to Java applet Groups15 written by John Wavrik of UCSD should be highly useful to students who actually attempt to practice exercises on their own A sequence of topics makes it easy to use this interactive textbook in a “linear”, not hyper-referenced way.
Concerns: None.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: This online text provides major help in learning the concepts of Abstract Algebra and, in particular, in solving problems. The intent with the interactive examples and sections of problems is that the student should attempt to work the exercises presented in the sections before clicking on the solution button This reinforces the basic precept that the only effective way to learn mathematics is by doing mathematics. The Java-applet tool is well chosen to reinforce and supplement the topics covered. The hyper-referenced definitions and theorems are extremely helpful if the site is used as a reference material.
Concerns: At its current state the site is unlikely to be used as a textbook for a course in Abstract Algebra but certainly makes an excellent tutorial supplement.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: This learning resource is easily navigable. The Java-applet tool is easy to use, and it seem to work flawlessly. The topics are well organized and all the key concepts are properly emphasized.
Concerns: None.