3-D printing unlocks Calculus at UHCL

December 20, 2016 | Lori Lopez

Pictured is Deanna Henderson, a calculus student, observing how the volume of a half torus can be found with cylindrical shells.

University of Houston-Clear Lake’s Mathematics and Statistics Department recently acquired a 3-D printer to help students understand complex surfaces. Calculus involves three-dimensional objects that can be extremely difficult to visualize. Now the department can print 3-D surfaces, and students can see details that were previously inaccessible. 

“Even with simulation software, it’s difficult for the students to understand the difference between the ‘washer technique’ and the ‘shell technique’,” said Nelson Carter, Mathematics lecturer. “The 3-D printer has unlocked their ability to understand because students can physically touch the figures and see them up close.”

Registration for the spring semester has already begun, with classes beginning Jan. 17, 2017. Additional information about the program can be found at www.uhcl.edu/science-engineering/mathematics-statistics, or email College of Science and Engineering Program Coordinator Lori Lopez, LopezLR@uhcl.edu.

For more information about attending UHCL, visit www.uhcl.edu or call the university’s Office of Admissions, 281-283-2500.

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