I just finished giving this presentation at the AMATYC Conference in Austin, TX. In this 17 minute video, I show how to use tables to recognize the objective function for optimization problems in calculus. I do a number of traditional problems as well as examples on economic order quantity and economic lot size from Business Calculus.
If you have been using my technology assignments from the Arsenic Removal from Drinking Water or Doctors and Nurses Projects, you know that for projects early in the semester I give my students extensive directions on how to use the equation editor Mathtype. I use Mathtype because my college bought a site license years ago. It entitled us to use Mathtype 6.5c forever. It integrated with Word 2003 perfectly and even Word 2007 when it came out. However, it does not play nicely with Word 2010. It is possible to make it work, but it does not work as seemlessly as it did with older versions of Word.
Normally this would not be a big deal except many students are beginning to purchase Word 2010 as a part of Office 2010. I could certainly recommend that the college purchase a new site license for the latest version of Mathype, but in these trying economic times such purchases are not likely to go through. Instead, I decided to reevaluate the equation editor that is provided in Word 2007 and 2010 to see if it would be a reasonable substitute for Mathtype.
After several weeks of using the equation editor in Word 2007 and 2010, I decided that it was easy for students to use and produced professional looking equations. It certainly does not produce equations as well as Mathtype, but for College Algebra, Finite Math and Calculus students, it is good enough.
I have been adding new material in the Technology Assignments to cover the usage of the Word equation editor in addition to the existing Mathtype instructions. The affected technology assigments are
Technology Assignment: Row Operations on the Ti-83 DOC | PDF in the project Arsenic Removal from Drinking Water
Technology Assignment: Rational ModelDOC | PDF in the Doctors and Nurses Project
Future projects with Mathtype components will also include a corresponding Word equation editor component also.