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The 2023 Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the MAA

The 2023 Annual Meeting of the Illinois Section of the Mathematical Association of America will be held March 31 & April 1, 2023 at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois.

Meeting Highlights

This year's conference will include:

Please check back soon. Additional information will be posted as it becomes available.

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Meeting Schedule

The conference will take place on Friday, March 31 and Saturday, April 1. The detailed meeting schedule and abstracts are available in PDF format:

Below is an overview of the meeting schedule.

Friday, March 31, 2023

Saturday, April 1, 2023

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Plenary Talks

Manda Riehl
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Opening Plenary, 1:00pm - 1:50pm on Friday, March 31
Discrete Mathematics Applied to Biology

Discrete mathematics is a useful field for computer scientists and electrical engineers, covering essential topics including logic, Boolean algebra, theory of computation, recursion, and many others. But recently the tools of discrete mathematics have brought about advances in the biological sciences, particularly in modeling biological systems and processes. We'll explore some applications of discrete mathematics to topics such as gene regulatory networks, predicting evolution, and RNA secondary structures.

Hortensia Soto
Colorado State University
Evening Plenary, 7:50pm - 8:45pm on Friday, March 31
Intentional Integration of Embodiment forms to teach the FHT

In this case study, we explored how a mathematics education researcher integrated embodiment beyond gesture as she developed an experiential foundation for the Fundamental Homorphism Theorem (FHT) in a first semester abstract algebra course. We found that this instructor intentionally used embodiment to support student contributions and to reduce levels of abstraction for the formal definitions, theorems, and proofs. In addition, she encouraged students to interact with physical materials and simulate the mathematics with their bodies. Simulations opened communication lines between the instructor and students, who were not fluent in formal language. The instructor's simultaneous use of various forms of embodiment primed students for the formalism and symbolism, highlighted and disambiguated students' referents, amplified students' contributions to develop fluency, and linked students' body form catchments to reinforce the FHT. Our results offer practical implications for teaching by illustrating examples of how embodiment can be implemented into an abstract algebra classroom.

Bob Cappetta
Florida Southwestern State College
Morning Plenary, 8:30am - 9:30am on Saturday, April 1
Active Learning in Calculus

The leaders of MAA and other mathematics professional societies have concluded that effective active learning is essential to improving student performance and confidence. This presentation will examine the evidence that supports this claim, and it will share suggestions and sample problems for implementation. Additionally, participants will have opportunities to discuss and share strategies and concerns regarding active learning in the calculus curriculum.

Chris Polly
Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory
Closing Plenary, 12:00pm - 1:00pm on Saturday, April 1
Everyday Math in the Pursuit of Big Science: A Muon g-2 Case Study

The Muon g-2 experiment at Fermilab utilizes an intense beam of subatomic particles, called muons, to search for telltale signs of new particles or yet undiscovered fundamental forces of nature. Published in 2021, initial results from the experiment confirmed a long-standing mystery first observed at Brookhaven National Laboratory over 20 years ago. The results seem to indicate a crack may be forming in the Standard Model of particle physics, the bedrock of physics at the most fundamental level. The experiment's evolution from proposal to the front page of the New York Times will be told with an emphasis on how the mathematics taught to our students gets put to everyday practical use in experimental searches that have the potential to shake our core understanding of the universe.

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Conference Workshop

This year's pre-conference workshop, titled "Metacognition: Teaching Students to Think about Learning", will be led by Manda Riehl from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology at 10:30am - 12:00pm on Friday, March 31. Dr. Riehl's abstract can be found below:

Metacognition involves our knowledge and regulation of our learning processes. Everyone uses metacognition to some degree, but all students (and faculty) have room to further develop their metacognitive skills. Many students rely on memorization and rehearsal as their main approaches to learning, when they could benefit from organizational approaches associated with lasting learning. This workshop will focus on understanding metacognition, tools faculty can use in their classrooms to improve student metacognition, and giving feedback to students on their metacognition. Faculty will leave with a concrete activity tailored to their course, students, and teaching style.

Please note that advance registration is required for participation in this workshop. Please select this option when completing your conference registration.

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Career Panel

This year's meeting will include a career panel for undergraduate students. The "Career Panel for Undergraduate Students: Preparation for Careers in Mathematical Sciences" will take place at 10:00am - 10:50am on Saturday, April 1 in HSC 1234. Panelists include

You can read more about each panelist here: Career Panelist Biographies.

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Registration Information

Online registration is through EventBrite. When you register, you will need to choose the appropriate ticket from EventBrite. Before you go to the registration site, decide whether you're attending the workshop and/or banquet in addition to the meeting. The section will absorb the EventBrite ticket fees this year because the 2020 fees were refunded by EventBrite due to the pandemic. Please choose the ticket option that best fits your circumstances. When registering, you will also be asked to confirm that you will follow the MAA Code of Conduct and the MAA Covid Safety Protocols (linked below). Online registration is available at

Note that registration is free this year due to the generosity of the College of DuPage waiving room rental and technology fees. However, there is still a charge for the workshop ($20) and the banquet ($40). ISMAA will extend any 2022-23 institutional membership to 2023-24 so that you may take advantage of the institutional membership registration benefits for the 2024 meeting. There is no need to indicate on your ticket choice that your institution has an institutional membership since all registration is free.

If you prefer to pay by check, you can mail your registration form (Word file or PDF) and payment to Pat Kiihne, ISMAA Secretary/Treasurer, Illinois College, 1101 West College Avenue, Jacksonville, IL 62650.

Please note that all conference participants are expected to adhere to the following MAA policies:

If you have any questions about registration, please contact Pat Kiihne (

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Student Travel Support

Travel funds are available to support student attendance at the ISMAA meeting at College of DuPage. Up to $75 per student is available for Illinois institutions to use in support of student travel, with a max of $300 per institution. Limited funds are available.

We ask that institutions which already provide full support not request these funds. Travel funds are not available to the hosting institution or to institutions within 50 miles of the meeting site. Travel awards are available for all students (secondary, undergraduate, or graduate); however, preference will be given to students presenting at the meeting.

To apply for travel funds, please fill out the Student Travel form (Word file or PDF). Please send completed forms electronically to Pat Kiihne ( by March 24, 2023.

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Section NExT

Project NExT (New Experiences in Teaching) is a professional development program of the MAA. This program is designed to support new college faculty in their teaching, scholarly, and professional activities and to help these new faculty members to get involved in the mathematical community beyond their own institutions. The success of Project NExT on the national level has prompted some MAA sections, including the Illinois section, to organize their own local versions of this program, called Section NExT.

The annual ISMAA Section NExT Program will be held in conjunction with the ISMAA Annual Meeting, this year held at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn on March 31 - April 1, 2023. Anyone within their first four years of teaching mathematics (after finishing a master's or doctoral degree) at any two or four-year college or university in Illinois is eligible, as well as any graduate students at universities in Illinois who are completing their PhD this year and have a position in Illinois for the upcoming academic year. Newly selected ISMAA Section NExT Fellows will have their meeting registration, pre-conference workshop registration, banquet fees, and Friday lunch paid for by the ISMAA for the 2023 and 2024 ISMAA Annual Meetings.

The Section NExT Program will begin on Friday morning (March 31, 2023), with the pre-conference workshop. This year's workshop "Metacognition" will be led by Manda Riehl from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. The workshop is followed by an opening lunch during which new ISMAA NExT Fellows will have an opportunity to get to know one another as well as other Section NExT Fellows and national NExT Fellows. The ISMAA Section NExT program will conclude on the morning of Saturday, April 1, 2023, preceding the closing address of the ISMAA meeting. The topic for the Saturday morning round table discussion will be determined by interest of the Fellows.

Please send your application to Emily Olson at Application materials for ISMAA Section NExT Fellows can be accessed via the links below.

ISMAA Section NExT Application (MS Word)
ISMAA Section NExT Application (pdf)

For further information, please contact the Coordinator for the ISMAA Section NExT Program:

Emily Olson
Department of Mathematics and Computational Sciences
Millikin University, Decatur, IL

The application deadline for the 2023 ISMAA Section NExT Fellows is March 10, 2023.

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Business Meeting

The annual business meeting of the section will be held during the conference. The time and location will be made available closer to the conference date.

The business meeting agenda includes approval of the minutes of the 2022 business meeting and the election of board members. A copy of the unapproved minutes of the 2022 business meeting is available for review.

The section must also vote on the proposed changes to the Joint Articulation Guide that ISMAA maintains together with IMACC (Illinois Mathematics Association of Community Colleges). These changes are primarily to fix minor errors in the guide, to align the course descriptions with those of IAI, and to make it easier to maintain the guide on an annual basis -- no major content changes are proposed. If you wish to review the changes before the business meeting, here are the links to the current guide and the suggested edits.

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Local Information


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