Vol. 7, No. 3, 2014

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ISSN: 1944-4184 (e-only)
ISSN: 1944-4176 (print)
Undergraduate research in mathematics with deaf and hard-of-hearing students: four perspectives

Henry Adler, Bonnie Jacob, Kim Kurz and Raja Kushalnagar

Vol. 7 (2014), No. 3, 247–264
Abstract

Involving more deaf and hard-of-hearing students in undergraduate research is a step toward getting more such students into STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) careers. Since evidence exists that undergraduate research improves retention, especially for some underrepresented groups that have low retention rates—as, for example, deaf and hard-of-hearing STEM majors—it is a particularly pertinent step to keep interested students in these career paths. Nunes and Moreno have suggested that deaf and hard-of-hearing students have the potential to pursue mathematics, but lack the resources. By involving more such individuals in undergraduate mathematics research, we can improve their success rates and promote mathematics research within the Deaf community.

Here we describe our experiences working both with and as deaf or hard-of- hearing students in research, as well as advice that stems from these experiences. Each of the authors is a faculty member at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, a college of Rochester Institute of Technology, and holds a PhD in a scientific field. Three of the authors are deaf, and one (Jacob) is hearing. While this paper describes the experiences and opinions of individuals, and is not meant to be an all-inclusive handbook on how to do research with any deaf or hard-of-hearing student, we hope that it will be a helpful resource.

Keywords
undergraduate research, deaf and hard-of-hearing students
Mathematical Subject Classification 2010
Primary: 97AXX
Milestones
Received: 18 December 2012
Revised: 8 May 2013
Accepted: 27 October 2013
Published: 28 April 2014

Communicated by Darren A. Narayan
Authors
Henry Adler
Science and Mathematics Department
National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology
52 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623
United States
Bonnie Jacob
Science and Mathematics Department
National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology
52 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623
United States
Kim Kurz
American Sign Language and Interpreting Education Department
National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology
52 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623
United States
Raja Kushalnagar
Information and Computing Studies Department
National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology
52 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623
United States