Kevin Houston
Member of PRiSM

Kevin Houston is a Senior Lecturer within the School of Mathematics at the University of Leeds. His disciplinary research interest was in Singularity Theory, however it has recently shifted to Discrete Differential Geometry. As a lecturer he is interested in investigating the reasons as to why particular methods of teaching are more effective at engaging students. While completing his postgraduate degree at the University of Warwick his interest in pedagogical research developed as he was expected to lead tutorials.He has always had an interest in teaching and completed a PGCHE alongside teaching Engineering at Middlesex University. It was here where he was faced with the challenge of finding innovative techniques of teaching to ensure that students understand the material.

Kevin is the author of the popular book, How To Think like a Mathematician, which acts as a companion to undergraduate mathematics providing all the necessary grounding for starting a degree in this field. Furthermore, it aids the transition between A-level and degree level mathematical teaching methods as higher education methods are more focussed on independent problem solving. He is currently in the process of developing a first-year module with the aim to embed the flipped classroom method into the course to help students find new ways of solving mathematical problems. During his time at the University of Leeds, he helped in establishing the module, Maths at Work, that helps prepare students for employment as it includes aspects of group work, presentations, with the final assessment of completing a group project. The main objective of the module is to challenge the perception that mathematics purely consists of theorem and proof, as it reveals the possibilities of applying theorems to real-world examples, such as Search Engine Optimisation. Kevin is interested in how students learn most efficiently and states that learning does not only involve transmitting the information to students, but that they benefit more from solving the problems independently.

He strongly believes in the practical application of knowledge, as it is more effective. In being a member of PRiSM he hopes to gain more insight into new teaching methods that other members are experimenting with, as well as, and disseminate the findings of his own experience.

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