Department of

Applied Mathematics and Statistics

Stony Brook University


and son James (1/20/2017)

Index: My Courses -- Corrections to my textbooks -- History of Undergraduate Program in Mathematics in America -- Park City Workshops -- Articles on Standards-Based Tests -- My Vita -- Vignettes from my father

How to Reach Me

Alan Tucker, Distinguished Teaching Professor
Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics
Office: Physics A137 (take Math Tower elevator to level 1, turn right out of elevator, at end of hallway turn left)
Phone: (631) 632-8365
Office hours: ALL ON ZOOM : Wed 10am- noon , Tu Th noon-1:30 pm , and appointment.
Editor-in-Chief, Applied Mathematics Letters,

Information on my course AMS 303

AMS 303, Graph Theory, is a sequel course to AMS 301 (see above). It goes into the graph theory topics of connectedness, planarity and coloring in greater detail than AMS 301 along with Polya's Enumeration Theorem, network flows, progressively finite games, and elements of cryptanalysis.

Corrections to my text Applied Combinatorics, 6th and 5th ed., John Wiley and Sons

Link to Applied Combinatorics corrections.

Corrections to my text, Unified Introduction to Linear Algebra

Link to Unified Linear Algebra Corrections.

History of the Undergraduate Program in Mathematics in America,

written for a Math Assoc. of America Centennial volume published in 2015. It appeared in the October 2013 issue of the American Mathematical Monthly. MAA History article

Park City Mathematics Standards Study Group

Each summer from 2004 to 2008, a group of research mathematicians met at the Park City Mathematics Institute to discuss issues about school mathematics. Three working papers were written by this author in collaboration with other mathematicians. The first workshop in 2004 produced a working paper entitled What is Important in School Mathematics . This topic was suggested by state mathematics coordinators (who met the week before our workshop) who felt that the long lists of state mathematics standards had lost track of the core goals of the school mathematics curriculum. The 2005 workshop refined the previous year's work to produce Some Organizing Principles for K-4 Mathematics. This document was the result of extended discussions with NCTM representatives. These discussions also played a significant role in the formulation of the 2006 NCTM Curriculum Focal Points report. The 2006 PCMI workshop focused on fractions, with primary attention on the preparation for fractions in elementary grades as opposed to the middle grades teaching of fractions. The working paper from this workshop is Preparation for Fractions.
Two more workshops were held to refine the topic of fractions.
The most important aspect of these workshops was that they set the stage for mathematicians to play a major role in creating new school mathematics standards, such as the 2010 Common Core State Standards.

Problems with Standards-based Mathematics Tests

Prof. Tucker has investigated problems in the psychometric methodology underlying the New York Regents Math A graduation test, and more generally in all standards-based mathematics tests. Prof. Tucker was a member of the special 2003 Regents Math A panel that investigated the failure of the June 2003 New York State mathematics graduation test. This panel was given unprecedented access to confidential test data which revealed the serious practical problems that arise in trying to use Item Response Theory to design a demanding new standards-based mathematics graduation test. Additionally, there was an extremely high correlation between students' performance on the 8th grade math test and the high school graduation test. The recommendations in this panel's report, including a redesign of the complete K-12 N Y math curriculum, were adopted by the NY Board of Regents. The report documented the psychometric problems in the Math A test without explaining the source of these problems. Subsequent analyses by Tucker found systemic flaws in New York's use of the theory of standards-based tests.

Click here for a short version of Tucker's findings about problems with the theory of performance standards, as it was applied to the Math A test.
Click here for for a complete analysis of problems with the Math A test. This article appeared in the May, 2011 issue of the American Mathematical Monthly.

VITA of Alan Tucker

An earlier academic world-- stories that my father A W Tucker told me.

Tucker Family-- Alan, Edward, Ann, James (left to right)-- summer, 2010. -- Applied Math & Statistics -- SUNY Stony Brook
Last update: November, 2019