Problem-Based Inquiry Seminar

An Introduction to PBIS Courses

Math 186 | Problem Based Inquiry Seminar in Quantitative Reasoning

Math 187 | Problem Based Inquiry Seminar

Math 188 | Problem Based Inquiry Seminar in Mathematics and Your Political World

Math 189 | Problem Based Inquiry Seminar in Statistics

Problem-based Inquiry Seminar (PBIS) courses focus on critical thinking and active learning. Students will be engaged in problem solving and will come to understand that a “problem” is situation that is unfamiliar and one for which a solution is not immediately evident. Being stuck is a natural state of problem solving and an essential part of improving thinking.

PBIS courses offer the opportunity to develop the ability to distinguish problem solving and critical thinking from exercises and routine thinking and to identify attitudes and beliefs that are conducive to success in challenging situations (and those which are not). The intent is to provide a strong intellectual experience that will enhance the university experience and form a solid base for life-long learning.

Specifically students will:

  • collect data, observe patterns, make and verify conjectures
  • improve their ability to reason logically
  • develop effective written and oral communication skills
  • improve skills related to critical thinking, problem solving and creativity
  • use and understand symbol systems and quantitative methods
  • understand of the principles of mathematics and the sciences.

Small classes, active learning and involvement with a common experience will encourage community building among students and faculty.


Department Office
Swart Hall, Room 118
Monday – Friday
8 a.m. – 4 p.m.


University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
645 Dempsey Trail
Oshkosh, WI 54902


(920) 424-1333
(920) 424-1812
Developmental Math Lab
Faculty and Staff