Revisiting Polya's summation techniques using a spreadsheet : from addition tables to Bernoulli polynomials

Abramovich, Sergei & Sugden, Stephen J. (2008) Revisiting Polya's summation techniques using a spreadsheet : from addition tables to Bernoulli polynomials. Spreadsheets in Education, 2(3), pp. 1-17.

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Recurrence relations in mathematics form a very powerful and compact way of looking at a wide range of relationships. Traditionally, the concept of recurrence has often been a difficult one for the secondary teacher to convey to students. Closely related to the powerful proof technique of mathematical induction, recurrences are able to capture many relationships in formulas much simpler than so-called direct or closed formulas. In computer science, recursive coding often has a similar compactness property, and, perhaps not surprisingly, suffers from similar problems in the classroom as recurrences: the students often find both the basic concepts and practicalities elusive. Using models designed to illuminate the relevant principles for the students, we offer a range of examples which use the modern spreadsheet environment to powerfully illustrate the great expressive and computational power of recurrences.

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ID Code: 73186
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Recurrence, Spreadsheet, Induction, Bernoulli Polynomials
ISSN: 1448-6156
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Mathematical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Deposited On: 01 Jul 2014 23:07
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2014 23:33

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