MATHTOUCH: Mathematical Input Interface in E-Assessment Systems

14 Sep 2016

MATHTOUCH: Mathematical Input Interface in E-Assessment Systems

Shizuka Shirai and Tetsuo Fukui, Mukogawa Women’s University

In recent years, e-assessment systems have been used for instruction to students in mathematical sciences education. However, text-based mathematical input interfaces of e-assessment systems are cumbersome for novice learners . In 2011, we developed a new interface with JAVA, named MathTOUCH that facilitates input a mathematical expression by interactively converting from a colloquial-style mathematical text (string). In this interface, the list of candidates for the desired mathematical expression is shown in WYSIWYG based on the user’s input. After all the elements that a user wishes to use are chosen interactively, the desired expression can be formed. This method enables the user to input almost mathematical expressions without learning a new language or syntax. In 2014, we presented a web-based drill system that assists learners in mastering some basic formulae using MathTOUCH. We conducted a field survey in a remedial math class of 20 junior high school students. The results of our survey showed that 85% of them found this system to be more fun than learning on paper. However, the MathTOUCH user has to use a JAVA-compliant device for mathematical input. In this study, we present the reconstructed MathTOUCH by using JavaScript (HTML5) and its implementation into STACK which is one of the e-assessment systems for mathematical sciences on Moodle.


A paper following this talk appeared in the EAMS 2016 special issue of MSOR Connections.