There will be extra credit opportunities during the
semester for which points will accumulate. When final grades are
given, extra credit points are taken into account in the determination of
-, nothing, or + attached to a letter grade.
You can obtain a passing grade in this class by
completing your work and missing no more than 8 credit hours of
Most people who do so will receive an A, B, or C in the course.
To obtain an A in this class, you must demonstrate deep understanding
of the material.
Since the class meets for 5 hours per week and satisfies 3 designators,
you should expect to work hard,
and put in the necessary time outside of class
in order to complete homework and assignments on time
(compared to a 3 hour course with no designators you will probably spend
significantly more time on this class).
Develop creative inquiry skills.
appreciation of what mathematics is,
what it has to offer, why it is useful, and the diverse ways
that people can be successful at mathematics (including you!).
Develop communication skills by
communicating mathematics to a general audience in writing projects,
group and class discussions and presentations.
Develop computer skills and advanced web searching techniques.
has been designated as a
computer use course.
Syllabus and Objectives
Financial Mathematics Interest formulas as
they apply to the real world - credit cards, student loans,
savings accounts, car and house purchases, taxes, retirement...
To recognize misrepresentations of studies and statistical data
in the real world
by understanding statistical techniques and satisfy the numerical
What is a Mathematician? The lives and mathematical
work and styles of some famous mathematicians.
our Earth and universe
You'll become a mathematician with the geometry
of the earth and universe as your field of study, while developing
Material is covered very quickly so
do plenty of exercises, more than those that are assigned.
In college, you can expect to spend 1.5-2 hours
outside of class for each hour in class. Plan to spend at least 7-10 hours
per week, out of class, on average, on this course.
This is standard for mathematics courses.
As a general rule of thumb, on average, you can expect to spend
about 2-3 hours outside of class per week
reviewing material and class notes,
3-6 hours outside of class per week for homework assignments, and about
1 hour outside of class per week on checking the
main web page and WebCT postings.
If you find that you are spending fewer hours than these guidelines
suggest, you can probably improve your grade by studying more.
If you are spending more hours than these guidelines suggest,
you may be studying inefficiently; in that case, you should
come see me.
You are responsible for all material covered and all announcements
and assignments made at each class, whether
you are present or not. You are also responsible for announcements
made on the main web page and WebCT postings, so check these
two places often.
Certain homework or assignments will require use of a computer with
web access, as
this is a computer intensive designated course. Either you will be given
some time in lab to do the assignment, or you will have at least
36 hours to complete such an assignment - enough time
to access a computer from school if you do not have one at home.
If, due to work or other responsibilities, you cannot
access a computer with web access
at least once every 36 hours, then you should drop out of this section.
As mandated for
writing designated courses,
you will be assigned a significant amount of writing.
You can expect to have your graded projects returned to you
after the same amount of time that I gave you to complete the assignment.
When writing up work, be sure to give acknowledgment where it is due.
Submitting someone else's work as your own (PLAGIARISM) is a serious
violation of the University's Academic Integrity Code.
Asking questions, and explaining things to others, in or out of class,
is one of the best ways to improve your understanding of the material.
This course is to be an environment in which everyone
feels comfortable asking questions,
making mistakes, offering good guesses and ideas, and is respectful to
You should think of me as
a combination between a coach and a future boss and you should
respect this dynamic in class, office hours and the bulletin board as
I try to
guide you to success in this class by
helping you develop professional skills.
You should explore each problem
and write out your
thinking in a way that can be shared with others.
Focus on your own ideas.
Turn in projects or prepare to present problems
even if it they are not complete, even if only to say, "I do not
understand such and such" or "I am stuck here."
Be as specific as possible. Conjecture.
In this course, you will be challenged with problems that you have never
seen before. I do not expect you to be able to solve all the issues
immediately. Instead, I want to see what you can do on your own.
Out in the real world, this is important, since no matter what job
you have, you will be expected to seek out information and answers
to new topics you have not seen before.
This may feel uncomfortable and frustrating. I understand this
and want to help you through the process.
It helps to remember that
there are no mathematical dead-ends!
Each time we get stuck, it teaches us
something about the problem we are working on, and leads us to a
deeper understanding of the mathematics.
In the real world though, you are not expected to face your work alone.
You will be allowed to talk to other people
may even be expected to work with other people.
In this class, you are also not expected to face your work alone.
I encourage you to talk to me often in class, office hours,
and the bulletin board,
and group work will also be encouraged.
I am always happy to help you in class, during office hours (or by
appointment), or on the WebCT bulletin board, and will
try to give you hints and direction.
At times though, to encourage the exploration process,
I may direct you to rethink a problem
and to come back to discuss it with me again afterwards. This occurs
when I believe that the struggle to understand is imperative for your
deep understanding of the material.
The text below is taken from Jeff Bennett's
HINTS ON HOW TO SUCCEED IN COLLEGE CLASSES.
Copyright 2000, Jeff Bennett.
Presenting Homework and Writing Assignments
All work that you turn-in should be of collegiate quality: neat and easy to read, well-organized, and demonstrating mastery of the subject matter. Future employers and teachers will expect this quality of work. Moreover, although submitting homework of collegiate quality requires "extra" effort, it serves two important purposes directly related to learning.
- The effort you expend in clearly explaining your work solidifies your learning. In particular, research has shown that writing and speaking trigger different areas of your brain. By writing something down - even when you think you already understand it - your learning is reinforced by involving other areas of your brain.
- By making your work clear and self-contained (that is, making it a document that you can read without referring to the questions in the text), it will be a much more useful study guide when you review for a quiz or exam.
The following guidelines will help ensure that your assignments meet the standards of collegiate quality.
- Always use proper grammar, proper sentence and paragraph structure, and proper spelling.
- All answers and other writing should be fully self-contained. A good test is to imagine that a friend is reading your work, and asking yourself whether the friend would understand exactly what you are trying to say. It is also helpful to read your work out loud to yourself, making sure that it sounds clear and coherent.
In problems that require calculation:
- Be sure to show your work clearly. By doing so, both you and your instructor can follow the process you used to obtain an answer.
- Word problems should have word answers. That is, after you have completed any necessary calculations, any problem stated in words should be answered with one or more complete sentences that describe the point of the problem and the meaning of your solution.
Pay attention to details that will make your assignments look good. For example:
- Use standard-sized white paper with clean edges (e.g., do not tear paper out of notebooks because it will have ragged edges).
- Staple all pages together; don't use paper clips or folded corners because they tend to get caught with other students' papers.
- Use a ruler to make straight lines in sketches or graphs.
- Include illustrations whenever they help to explain your answer.
- If you study with friends, be sure that you turn in your own work stated
in your own words - it is important that you avoid any possible appearance
of academic dishonesty.