Steve Strogatz

This case of undergraduate mathematics teaching contains excerpts from the award winning professor Steve Strogatz, teaching his course: Mathematical Explorations. The case begins on the second day of exploring an Art of Mathematics task called Pennies and Paperclips. The students spent the first class playing the game and making conjectures as to winning placements of the pennies and paperclips. In the second day, which we see in the video case, the students move to making proofs. We encourage you to try the task, which is posed at the beginning, before watching the remainder of the video case.

Steve Strogatz is the Jacob Gould Schurman Professor of Applied Mathematics and Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow at Cornell University. He is a world-renowned mathematician and was recently awarded the Weiss Fellow Teaching award. He is a New York Times columnist and author of The Joy of x, Synch and The Calculus of Friendship.

Read excerpts from Jo Boaler’s interview with Professor Strogatz, that is part of her new online class: Mathematical Mindsets.



Additional Resources from Steve

Steven Strogatz on Teaching Eigenvectors and Eigenvalues

Listen to the Recording (about 5 minutes)


Inspiring Students with Steven Strogatz

Listen to the Episode (about 1 hour, or select a segment)