The US National Institutes of Health fund a new study of maths
This image by Wolfgang Beyer shows a detail of the fractal Mandelbrot set. A fractal is an object where the smaller parts appear similar to the whole. Mathematical fractals like this are created by repeating the same equation time and time again. In nature, things like snowflakes and mountains can be described as fractal.
TEDS has received funding to conduct an exciting new study which looks at maths ability. Currently, relatively little is known about what factors influence an individual’s maths abilities so we are really looking forward to finding out more.
There have already been some extremely interesting findings. For example, did you know that even small babies can discriminate between different quantities? They will notice a change between, say, 8 to 4 dots, even if other aspects, such as the space occupied on the screen, remain constant. Babies can do this long before they have been taught anything about exact numbers or mathematics. The ability seems to be intuitive, and has been dubbed ‘number sense’. How this ‘number sense’ contributes to an individual’s ability to do complex maths later in life remains to be discovered. With the help of the TEDS twins we will be investigating this and other possibilities. We look forward to updating you on our findings!