Glen Van Brummelen
Mathematics Coordinator and Tutor (Math)
BSc, University of Alberta
MSc, Simon Fraser University
PhD, Simon Fraser University
Glen has taught mathematics at small liberal arts colleges his entire career and is the recipient of the Haimo award, the top teaching award for undergraduate math in North America. A historian of mathematics, he is especially interested in trigonometry and astronomy in ancient Greece and medieval Islam.
He has taught over 30 courses, including traditional topics in math, but also mathematics and music; mathematics and democracy; mathematics and computer graphics; spherical trigonometry (using a 19th-century textbook); and how to be an ancient astronomer.
In the summer, he teaches the history of math regularly at MathPath, a math camp for 7th and 8th graders.
He is the past president of the Canadian Society for History and Philosophy of Mathematics, and former governor-at-large for Canadian members of the Mathematical Association of America. In addition to authoring 30 scholarly and 15 encyclopedia articles, Glen is co-editor of Mathematics and the Historian’s Craft; authored the first history of trigonometry in over a century with Princeton University Press, The Mathematics of the Heavens and the Earth: The Early History of Trigonometry; and recently published Heavenly Mathematics: The Forgotten Art of Spherical Trigonometry, also with Princeton.
An avid soccer player, Glen played goal on the college team at his two previous colleges. He is undefeated at chess in the past 20 years, with a record of 2-0. He notes that “the key is to choose one’s opponents carefully.”