Design of Trigonometry Apps for Vocational Education

Jens Bjarke Pedersen, Anders Steffen Ödding Andersen, and Gunver Majgaard


Design, smartphone, mathematics, educational tools


How can smartphones apps enrich the learning of mathematics in vocational education? This article examines how mathematics teaching can be enriched by apps using smartphone sensors such as gyroscope, compass, camera, and touch screen in a gaming context. An iterative and participatory design process involving two classes of carpentry students from different vocational colleges resulted in two highly successful and course-relevant games based on trigonometry. Each game consists of quests and missions whose successful completion unlocks more theoretical multiple-choice exercises for the classroom. The combination of competition to unlock exercises, competition for placing on the high-score list, and physical activity proved very motivating for the students and was also approved by their teachers. In this article we describe our design principles, the overall game architecture and the games themselves. We talk about our experience in implementing our design process and subsequently summarize the pros and cons of the application and the smartphone platform and how the app developed contributes to vocational mathematics teaching.

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