My Students

This page is for you


Being a....College Student at WIU

Being a....Teacher Education Student

WIU TPEP Conceptual Framework

Being a....Math Major in Teacher Education

Being a....Mathematics Student

Finding Opportunities

2/2016A Few Tips on WesternOnline and MyMathLab

WesternOnline ( is our online Course Management System at WIU (it is by DesireToLearn, aka D2L).

MyMathLab (MML) is the online textbook system (from Pearson) that is used for numerous textbooks at WIU. You can usually view the entire book and do online homework and take online quizzes (which are automatically graded by MML).

Transfering to WIU and Transferring Courses (from a community college, college, or university)

Math Majors in Teacher Education students see Portfolio Scope and Sequence, Mathematics Department Teacher Education Requirements, Suggestions for Illinois Secondary Mathematics Content Exam Preparation, Notes for Student Teachers

College of Education and Teacher Education Links

WIU TPEP Conceptual Framework


This a new sytem of online quizzes for teachers and student. Click here for the directions.

Information on the Illinois Basic Skills Test and Teacher Certification

Suggestions For Preparing for the Mathematics Portion of the Illinois Basic Skills Exam for Teachers

Included on this page are links to the ISBE Basic Skills study guide and Illinois Certification Testing System. More information can be obtained from the COEHS Advising Center at 309/298-1438.

For More Information on ISBE Teacher Certification Exams follow the links in the ISBE Section of My Teaching Resources Page.

Top 10 Test-Taking Strategies

On Lesson Planning

Suggestions for making a study plan for mathematics exams. click here

Helpful Study Tips for College Students (and time management and more)

Regression Models on the TI-83+

Steps for using the TI-83+ for finding regression models for data

Data Sets and Statistics

Easy Stats - from US Census Bureau (Can export to Excel.)

American FactFinder - from the US Census Bureau.

Measure of America - "provides easy-to-use yet methodologically sound tools for understanding the distribution of well-being and opportunity in America." Interactive maps are great.

4/2016Open Data Inception - 1600+ Open Data Portals Around the World - Data visualization. "For a fact-based world view. - Bureau of Labor Statistics. Searchable, customizable, exportable to Excel.

Your Stat Class - List of organizations who have posted data. "Have you ever wanted to perform a research study but was reluctant to do so because you didn’t have the data?  You soon realize that you don’t have the time, money, or resources to collect your own data.  Well, don’t worry!" - A massive central data source and a handy way to graphically compare nations. You do have to side-step the ads.

Exploring Data - from the Math Forum.

Finding Data on the Internet by Robert Niles

National Center for Education Statistics - From the US Department of Education.  Includes NAEP data and Public School District Finance Peer Search.

Neighborhood Data - Stats on things such as median income, money spent per pupil on education, and sunny days per year. Compare cities and against the national average. From MSN House and Home.

Social Explorer - map of US which is zoomable and clickable to find demographic data.

Gapminder World - Interesting (interactive) way to look at data.

Baseball Reference - Baseball statistics.
Baseball Almanac
- Most everything you want to know about baseball.

Logarithms and the Richter Scale - Earthquake Data Available from the NEIC.

Information Please - Contains almanacs, statistics, and more.

Writing Suggestions

A Pocket Style Manual (4th edition as of 1/2004) by Diana Hacker. This is required for English 180 and 280 at WIU and should be used early, consistently, and often by all WIU students. If you have lost yours, they are available in the bookstore.

The Five-Paragraph Essay - from Study Guides and Strategies.

Another one on the The Five-Paragraph Essay - from the UK

Elements of Style - by William Strunk, Jr. A timeless reference that gives clear suggestions for improving ones writing.

Students writing a paper may want to click Western's Writing Center, or OWL (On-line Writing Lab at Purdue University), or click:

GradeSaver - Professional proofreading and editting online. Some of this costs (it's "professional"). Quite a bit is free, including ClassicNotes.

Assignment Calculator - From the University of Minnesota. Helps you set up a schedule and list of task for writing a paper. Also provides resources for improving your writing.

Special Note on Letters of Recommendation

Things are changing (ugh). In the past I've sent letters of recommendation for students to the WIU Career Services Office and they would mail them out to school districts where students were applying for jobs. The Career Services Office no longer maintains a credentials file with letters of recommendation which they mail out to school districts where candidates are appying.

They do have a useful eRecruiting system, which I recommend you use, where candidates can post resumes and information which can be viewed by potential employers. However, the eRecruiting system has no mechanism for confidential letters of recommendation.

Many school districts are going away from letters of recommendation and using references instead. Some still use letters of recommendation.

What this all means:

Undergraduate Research and Summer Opportunities

Resume Writing

How to Write a Great Resume: The Definitive Guide

Write a Great Resume to Start Your Careers

Click here for the Math TEAM page. The Math TEAM is a student group for prospective teachers.

Some Scholarship links

Get Published - click Rose-Hulman Undergraduate Mathematics Journal to see how you can submit an article for publication.

So, Just Who Uses Math Page - Career Information Links.
See also, Teaching Career page.

 Student notes from past semesters - Old stuff:

Math 355 students click here (Fall 2002)
Educ/Math 439 students click here (Fall 2001).
Math 402 Students - Spring 2001 - WIU-RC - click for course information.
Math 402 students click here
Pythagorean and Similar Triangle Practice
Math 504 students click here
Math 406 Students click here for some good practice problems written by classmates (and a few others).

WIU Home Page ~ Math Department ~ MERO

Back to Jim Olsen's homepage

James R. Olsen, Western Illinois University
Page last updated: October 8, 2017

Counter since 9/17/05