Exploring the limits of trigonometric functions: Results and reflections from a pilot study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In this paper, we report a pilot study on engaging a group of undergraduate students to explore the limits of sin(x)/x and tan(x)/x as x approaches to 0, with the use of non-graphic scientific calculators. By comparing the results in the pretest and the post-test, we found that the students had improvements in the tested items, which involved the basic concepts of limits, but had room for further improvement in those that required them to explain their answers. An analysis of the students’ performances in the tests by using the APOS (i.e. action-process-object-schema) theory framework is reported. Reflections and suggestions on how to teach the topic more effectively are provided. Copyright © 2013 Taylor & Francis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)214-226
JournalInternational Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology
Volume45
Issue number2
Early online dateAug 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Fingerprint

Circular function
tan(-x)
Students
sin(-x)
Calculator
Pre-test
Schema
student
basic concept
performance
Group
Framework
Concepts
Teaching
Object

Citation

Man, Y.-K., & Poon, K.-K. (2014). Exploring the limits of trigonometric functions: Results and reflections from a pilot study. International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology, 45(2), 214-226.

Keywords

  • Limits of trigonometric functions,
  • Exploratory approach
  • APOS theory