Faculty Directory

John Neely

Office Hours - Fall 2012

  • Monday 11:00-11:50
  • Tuesday 11:00-11:50
  • Wednesday 11:00-11:50
  • Thursday 11:00 11:50

Classes I Teach

  • Math for Liberal Arts
  • Statistics
  • Pre-Calculus
  • Calculus I
  • Calculus II
  • Calculus III

About Me

I am a native of Waterloo, Iowa. I graduated from East High School in 1993 and shortly after this attended Hawkeye Community College. I graduated from Hawkeye with an Associate of Arts in 1997. I then went on to UNI to get a Bachelors of Arts in Secondary Math Education in 2000 and a Masters of Arts in Pure Math in 2002. After this I supervised the student tutors at UNI and taught as an adjunct. In 2004 I received a full time position as a math instructor at Hawkeye. I've been here ever since!

One of my hobbies is performing magic, especially sleight-of-hand with cards. I have created many of my own routines and have had them published in magic journals and books which compile tricks from different magicians. While I have been good at magic for some time, I have not always been very good at math. One of my lowest scores on the ACT was math. I blame this on the many hours I spent in high school learning and practicing card tricks rather than studying math. This changed in college. I became very interested in many different things including math, science, history, philosophy, and theology.

In the fall of 1999 I student taught at Kern Middle School and Thomas Jefferson High School in Council Bluffs Iowa. One of the things I found very difficult was doing calculations in front of the classroom. Much of the math learned in college did not deal with numbers and when it did I always used a calculator. It was embarrassing, however, having to use a calculator in front of my classes to perform calculations which my students were able to do in their heads (yes it was really that bad). My experience student teaching provided strong motivation for me to learn how I could improve my abilities to perform mental computations in front of the classroom. This became the topic of my masters paper which was titled A Look at Proficient Mental Computations Through the Eyes of a Computationally Challenged Math Teacher [pdf]. I am pleased to say, as a result, my ability to perform mental computations in front of the classroom has greatly improved. My paper also won the UNI master's paper of the year award in 2002.

Today I am interested in several different areas of mathematics. One area in particular is Nonstandard Analysis and the possibility of using the Hyperreal numbers in an introductory Calculus course. I recently did a presentation on this topic at the Iowa Association of Two Year Colleges (IMATYC). The presentation was called Calculus without Limits [pdf].

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