Contemporary, Emerging Mathematics for Teachers


Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma (4 course program) towards the MEd Interdisciplinary




One year (4 consecutive terms)


Graduate Program Administrator:
Lisa Dale

Academic Coordinator:
Dr. Krista Francis

Program Overview

Contemporary branches in mathematics have a variety of applications that are increasingly common in our society: specially with, and for, the aid of digital technologies. Some of these branches started to appear in different program of studies in Canada and around the world, such as graph theory, cryptography and coding. Surprisingly, many of the new mathematics branches, and their applications, are accessible to the youth.

Program Details

Courses in this program are offered in a blended format. Consisting of our summer residency, and on campus experience held in Summer with online work completed before and/or after your time in Calgary. Fall, Winter, and Spring courses are typically held fully online through Desire2Learn and Zoom. For additional information regarding online delivery, refer to the Online Delivery eLearn website.

The purpose is to explore mathematical topics, applications, and implications to society that could complement and enrich mathematics education from K to 12. No advanced mathematical knowledge is required for this program. Each course involves open-ended explorations beneficial for both teachers with a standard mathematical background and teachers with an advanced mathematical knowledge who want to learn about latest applications of mathematics. Digital technologies play an important role in this 4-course topic. They support the exploration and application of mathematics through specialized software, such as programs for symbolic calculation and data analysis and visualization. The included topics in mathematics are also tools for technological applications, such as image visualization and programming (e.g. 3D geometry for video game design). This 4-course topic introduces the use of such technologies and the fundamental principles underpinning mathematical applications.

This program introduces secondary and elementary teachers to contemporary mathematics and ways of thinking about mathematics—not included in traditional curricula—in a range of current applications, as used by experts in different professions.

A registration package will be sent to new students after they have been admitted. Registration for the summer term will be available in late winter. Fall and Winter registration opens in the spring. Your Graduate Program Administrator will send more information about registration to you.

Fee details are available through the University Calendar. An explanation of fees is available on the Faculty of Graduate Studies' website.

The University of Calgary offers multiple ways to meet the cost of your education. Please refer to the Awards, Scholarships and Bursaries page to learn more about options available to students. For additional information, please contact Student Financial Support.

Program Schedule & Course Descriptions

  • Program begins each Summer term (refer to the Academic Schedule for specific dates)
  • Outlines are normally available 1-2 weeks prior to the start of term in D2L
  • 3 units per course

Term 1 - Summer

Analytical and Algorithmic Reasoning

Analytical and algorithmic reasoning can be applied in a variety of contexts, in particular for technologies that are nowadays available to the youth (such as robotics and video game development). The course includes strategies for problem solving and decision making, exploring algorithmic and computational thinking. The course also explores a range of decision making systems such as voting systems, apportionment problems, and game theory. Algorithmic thinking is addressed through applications to cryptography, machine learning and computational thinking.

Registration info:
EDER 689.99 

Term 1 - Summer

Data: What it means and how to handle it

Our ability to generate, store, communicate and analyze unimaginable amounts of data about our world and ourselves is revolutionizing our lives. This course will introduce some basic principles and mathematical tools to help understand how all this information can be managed, analyzed and used – or misused. New methods and tools for data visualization, measurement, classification and analysis are explored. Finally, the course will critically analyze the type of inferences and interpretations that can be drawn from different forms of data, data representation, and data analysis.

Registration info:
EDER 689.52 

Term 2 - Fall

Geometry in Nature, Art, and Computer Graphics

Geometry has a variety of applications in arts, computer sciences, and modeling natural phenomena. This course will look at the mathematical ideas around shape and symmetry in nature, in contemporary and classical art, and in computer graphics. Both classic and contemporary shapes are studied, such as regular polyhedra and fractals, with applications to arts and designs. This will allow to study symmetries and patterns found in nature. Finally, the course describes algorithms for image representation and compression used for virtual reality and media communication.

Registration info:
EDER 689.05

Term 3 - Winter

Mathematics for Sustainability

This course applies mathematical tools introduced in the previous courses in the program through a look at sustainability issues from a mathematical perspective, asking fundamental questions such as: How large? How fast? How risky? How connected? The course addresses mathematical techniques that can be used to answer these questions, and have the chance to explore their own applications of these techniques to real-world sustainability issues, both local and global in scale.

Registration info:
EDER 689.03