P.O.W.E.R. Math


Sherri Messersmith has over 25 years of experience teaching many different courses from developmental mathematics through calculus. She is also the author of a successful hardcover series of developmental math textbooks and is a key note speaker at events across the country.

Developmental students don’t want to fail, they just don’t know how to succeed. Teaching students at the developmental level is not just about teaching mathematics; it’s about helping them learn all of the ‘other’ things it takes to be successful in college (and in life). If students don’t know how to read a textbook, how to manage their time, how to take notes, how to set realistic goals, how to study, etc. —if they don’t know how to be college students, then how can they be successful in our math courses? This challenge for students becomes our challenge as instructors. How do we teach successful student behavior while also getting through the objectives in our math courses?

First and foremost, this is a math textbook. Its purpose is to present all of the mathematics that is required for a course in the clearest, most mathematically precise way possible through the use of both traditional methods and some tat you will find unique. But we think it is crucial to address study strategies as well, and, in fact, Larry and I wrote the manuscripts this way even before we met Bob! We teamed up to formalize the steps by integrating the P.O.W.E.R. framework into the textbooks, customizing it for teaching and learning mathematics. It turned out to be a very natural fit.”


Lawrence (Larry) Perez has fifteen years of classroom experience teaching math and was the recipient of the 2010 Community College Professor of the Year Award in Orange County, California. He is the creator of the award-winning online learning environment Algebra2go®.

It’s not just about the content. Having an easy-to-read text coupled with thought-provoking pedagogy, in many cases, is not enough. As instructors, we strive to teach our students how to be successful learners. Integrating study strategies that are not directly connected to the text may not suffice. This is what makes the P.O.W.E.R. Math Series different. Dr. Feldman’s research has provided the necessary framework that can assist developmental math students in navigating the difficult transition from arithmetic to abstract algebra and it is applicable to a variety of learning environments. It is also a framework that we as developmental math instructors can use to create out own supplemental resources and refine our personal teaching styles.”


Bob Feldman has a doctorate in psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In addition to his years of experience in the classroom, he developed the research-based P.O.W.E.R. framework, written more than 200 scientific articles, book chapters and books, including the popular student success textbook series P.O.W.E.R. Learning.

Good students are made, not born. What does being a ‘good’ student at the college level mean? Among other things, it means coming to class prepared, taking good notes, developing good study habits, and managing time effectively. These skills can be taught, and taught in ways that lead to success. In fact, careful research shows courses that cover the skills related to college success produce a significant and demonstrable rise in student retention beyond the first semester in college. After years of teaching and doing research in student success, I developed P.O.W.E.R. Learning to help students to achieve their goals in any class and even after they graduate.”

“A developmental math course is often one of the first courses students take at the college level, and it is the gateway to continuing their college education. We have integrated a proven method of helping students develop basic skills into a text written by instructors with years of classroom experience.”

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