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Southwestern Assemblies of God University holds “World Series of Math” Waxahachie, TXNovember 23, 2011Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) professor Tom Ferguson hosted a “World Series of Math” competition with students from his college algebra classes.

For Campus Days, Tom Ferguson prepared an activity for his students and visitors using the concepts taught in the course. Ferguson developed the "World Series of Math” game where students solve mental math problems as a team. When he received positive feedback on the game, he decided to make it an event throughout the semester.

The teams, the Penguins and the Tigers, were divided into two sections by the days the classes met, and then into five person teams within the individual courses. The timed competitions did not take long. Ferguson flashes a problem on the projector, and the students are timed on how long they take to solve it. “Staging the game only takes a few minutes. The last problem took one class 20 seconds to solve,” says Ferguson. The questions are then collected and compared with other teams’ answers.

The class usually begins with a quiz on the previous days’ lecture, but it occasionally starts with one of Ferguson’s “World Series” equations. Not all students are involved in a team; their participation is calculated into their participation grade.

“It’s a great way to get out of our normal routine,” says one student.

Winners of the World Series were announced this past week after the two winning five-person teams competed against each other. The Tuesday/Thursday Penguins and the Monday/Wednesday/Friday Tigers competed in seven rounds using techniques learned in class. Each team answered questions separately and then were collected and checked for correctness.

Ferguson announced the results of the Series, sports announcer style, displaying the numbers on a baseball scorecard. The winners will not only receive the title of “World Series of Math” champion, but are also eligible for a $200 donor scholarship.

The Tigers won the first match of the Series due to one crucial error made by the Penguins. As of now, the Tigers lead 1-0. Results of the next game will be revealed soon.

Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) is a private, Christian university located 30 minutes south of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex in Waxahachie, Texas. The University was established in 1927, and now offers more than 60 associate, bachelor’s or master’s degrees on campus or online. More information is available at www.sagu.edu or by calling 1-888-YES-SAGU.

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