Petra Menz, Senior Lecturer

Ph.D. Mathematics · Simon Fraser University · 2015
B.Ed. Mathematics and Computing Sciences · University of British Columbia · 1996
M.Sc. Mathematics · University of British Columbia · 1994
B.Sc. Mathematics and Computing Sciences · University of Toronto · 1992

SC K10513 | 778-782-3070
pmenz@sfu.ca

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Teaching Interests

The best part about teaching mathematics at the undergraduate level is that I get to support students in achieving their academic goals and bring people closer to neat mathematical aspects that are embedded in our world. I have come to understand that learning is life-long and that reflection can bring about change, which I try to instill in my students as well. My research interests are multifarious: embodiment, language, technology, well-being, cultures in mathematics. I continuously pick up valuable information from research in education as well as mathematics and seek opportunities to apply this information to enhance learning and teaching.

I have been the instructor of everything from small classes (20-40 students) to large classes (500 students). I have taught FAN X99, MATH 100, MATH 150/151/152/251, MATH 157/158, MATH 160 and MATH 190 at SFU as well as Finite Mathematics for Management Sciences, Linear Algebra I and II, and Partial Differential Equations at UNB.

 

Research Interests

During my doctoral work from 2011 to 2015, I explored the relationship that exists between a diagram and a mathematician through an embodied as well as material lens, while leaning on theories of Gilles Châtelet, who regards the diagram as the place of mathematical invention. In this view, the diagram is regarded as a material site: gestures, such as touching a line or tracing through the lines in a diagram, are evidence that the mathematical objects and relationships depicted in the diagram are physical to a mathematician. Furthermore, I investigated  the enculturation process of a mathematics graduate student into mathematical research through diagramming and gesturing.

Currently, I am interested in how undergraduate students are enculturated into mathematics through all senses.