Edit: Thanks to the 162 people who have signed up so far! You've made this proposal one of the fastest-growing proposals of all time.

The math teaching SE proposal has reached the commitment phase, where it needs 200 people to register for a private beta. Many proposals stall here because they can't find 200 people to participate in a private beta; there is large initial interest, and then signups die out. If you are at all interested, please sign up at http://area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/64216/mathematics-learning-studying-and-education

The users in the private beta are supposed to ask/answer 10 questions over a period of about six months (although you can easily do this in a couple of weeks or even days).

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    $\begingroup$ I signed up, but it created another account for me. How do I get it merged? $\endgroup$
    – Calvin Lin
    Feb 21, 2014 at 8:53
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    $\begingroup$ Only moderators can merge accounts, I think. Thanks for signing up! Try contacting a moderator or searching meta for 'merge account'. $\endgroup$ Feb 21, 2014 at 12:53
  • $\begingroup$ @CalvinLin You created the account as an unregistered user, if you register the account (via the "register" option at the top middle on the profile page while logged in) with the same login as you use here, it should be linked. If you have any trouble, you can reach us through the "contact us" form, and I'll be able to work directly with you to fix that. $\endgroup$
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Feb 21, 2014 at 22:28
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    $\begingroup$ What does "ask/answer" mean? We have to ask ten and answer ten? Or just satisfy asked + answered $\geq$ 10? $\endgroup$
    – Jack M
    Feb 22, 2014 at 17:08
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    $\begingroup$ the second option $\endgroup$ Feb 22, 2014 at 18:36
  • $\begingroup$ "Proposed Q&A site for math educators, enthusiasts, students, professors." There seems to be overlap with the people who generally post on this Math forum. Is the intent to be more explicitly geared towards k-12 classroom math? Education issues and debates? $\endgroup$
    – JackOfAll
    Feb 27, 2014 at 12:54
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    $\begingroup$ @JackOfAll It's geared towards questions about the process of teaching at any level. So questions would be like "How can I assign meaningful homework if all the solutions are online?" $\endgroup$ Feb 27, 2014 at 13:44
  • $\begingroup$ That isn't a teaching question, but a question of academic administration, institutional bureaucracy and the like. Construed as a teaching question the answer is trivial: the exercises are just as meaningful, and potentially more instructive, when solutions are available. The question you appear to have in mind is, "how can I continue to effectively pressure and manipulate students to perform mathematics exercises when solutions are easily found online", which is a question of bureaucracy, methods of control and other things irrelevant to mathematics. @BrianRushton $\endgroup$
    – zyx
    Feb 27, 2014 at 17:39
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    $\begingroup$ Brian slowly backs away without making eye contact. His hands drop his list of possible questions as he disappears around the corner. @zyx picks up the list. "#2: Is electroshock therapy available for use in American academic institutions as a means of motivation?" He crumples the paper. "This is not the last time we will meet, Rushton." $\endgroup$ Feb 27, 2014 at 17:45
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    $\begingroup$ @zyx You're right, there is a serious point to be made here. You can browse the complete list of sample questions (the one I mentioned was my own, and not representative of all questions). An answer like you've begun here, backed up with psychological studies or other references, belongs on some stackexchange, whether math-specific or not. $\endgroup$ Feb 27, 2014 at 17:54
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    $\begingroup$ @zyx There is actually a large group of people involved in the proposal who want to make sure to avoid exactly what you're talking about. Specifically, they want to make sure that self-learners and other people in non-traditional teaching situations are represented and welcomed. You can see some of their comments in the discussion on names. quid in particular is a strong advocate of this viewpoint. My question got upvoted because some people agree with the student-control viewpoint (as you call it), and everyone else was in a rush to get the proposal started. $\endgroup$ Feb 27, 2014 at 18:02
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    $\begingroup$ @zyx I would recommend starting such a discussion in the are51 site and opening it up to discussion. I'm sure that some people would be very interested, including Bill Dubuque and others. $\endgroup$ Feb 27, 2014 at 18:13
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    $\begingroup$ I may do that, but since the site is being promoted here (and I don't necessarily intend to register for the private beta there), this is as good a place as any for the time being. $\endgroup$
    – zyx
    Feb 27, 2014 at 18:15
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    $\begingroup$ @quid, there is a critical problem at the very core of the current proposal: it defines the new site in terms of Who (a site "for educators ... students and professors") rather than What (the subject matter). As long as that is the case, it will tend to prejudice the types of users and the content posted on the site toward a mentality of institutional administration, pressure and "incentives" as discussed above, that has little connection (except, perhaps, an adverse one) with teaching mathematics. Mixing some genuine teaching discussion with that does not remove the problem. $\endgroup$
    – zyx
    Feb 28, 2014 at 5:02
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    $\begingroup$ Now 40 more and then it's beta-time. Looking forward to it. $\endgroup$ Mar 1, 2014 at 12:14


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