Language Practices and Ideologies in Real Analysis Lectures
The undergraduate real analysis course, in addition to being particularly difficult to teach and to learn, is often challenging to justify and explain. Throughout the year, my mentor and I have studied several professors’ language practices used in their real analysis lectures in order to answer the questions: What is real analysis and why should we study it? By coding instances of the professors exhibiting value judgments, asserting student-instructor positionality, and other examples of “tension” in the professors’ justification of the course, we have explored how mathematicians navigate the complicated “epistemic game” of real analysis. This summer, we will expand on our research of these fascinating questions regarding the purpose of this class by gathering math student responses to real analysis lectures.