The site is dedicated to the Pascal Triangle and its connections to different areas of mathematics. It also contains a set of exercises that is designed to illuminate these connections.
Type of Material:
The site can be used as a project (or take-home assignment) source in an appropriate mathematical course or as reference material for self-guided study.
A Web browser.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
The major learning goal of this material is to illuminate some concepts related to the Pascal triangle and its connection to topics in Abstract Algebra, Number Theory, Combinatorics and Fractal Geometry.
Target Student Population:
Students in Abstract Algebra or Elementary Number Theory courses.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
A semester course of Algebraic Structures.
Pascal's triangle is a geometric arrangement of the binomial coefficients in a triangle. The main purpose of this site is to gradually establish the link between the basic definition and construction of the Pascal triangle and its applications in abstract algebra including the fractal version of the triangle that uses modular arithmetic and even cellular automata. There is a full set of exercises that are at a reasonable level for the intended audience.
Some of the areas of the site are very terse. For example one of the main links: Procedure links to a page that contains one line of text that should be elaborated upon. The graphics and design are very simplistic. The site could benefit from better formatted equations, background and pictures.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
The entire site (or separate parts of it) can be used as a good project source of assignments or projects that may accompany an Abstract Algebra (related sub-discipline). One can also use the site as reference material for self-guided study. The main strength of this site is the set of exercises (with answers) that is designed to highlight the main concepts. Students can either be assigned the exercises or they can use this site as a reference for a project in a project-based group theory or number theory class.
The over-simplistic design and structure of the site makes it hard to find and put emphasis on the main concepts of Pascals triangle applications if the user does not have instructor's guidance.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
Since the site is essentially a collection of cross-referenced web pages, its use is very easy and straightforward. Good hyperlink placement makes navigation easy and convenient.
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