Spring 2006

MTHS 641
Thinking and Proving: Topics in Discrete Mathematics


01/23/2006 - 05/06/2006
Wednesday 06:00 PM - 08:30 PM

Science Tower 137

This course uses topics from discrete mathematics to illustrate general methods of approaching and solving mathematical problems. We will develop core ideas of discrete mathematics from areas like logic, basic set theory, combinatorics, probability and graph theory. We will use this development to think about the way we solve problems and present our solutions. In this way the course should enhance the ability of students to approach other areas of mathematics as well.

The course will be based on the book Mathematical Thinking; Problem Solving, and Proofs by J. P. D'Angelo and D.B. West. An essential part of the course will be the many engaging problems that can be found in this book, which will be assigned on a regular basis. The problems emphasize thinking rather than computation, and students will be expected to present their thinking in well written weekly assignments.

Students should have a solid command of basic algebra and be intrigued by challenging problems.

Adam Fieldsteel (A.B. Brown University; Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley) is professor of mathematics. His research focuses on ergodic theory and topological dynamics, and his recent publications include: (with A. Blokh), "Sets that force recurrence," Proceedings of the American Mathematical Society (2002); (with K. Dajani), "Equipartition of interval partitions and an application to number theory," Proceedings of the American Mathematical Society (2001); (with R. Hasfura), "Dyadic equivalence to completely positive entropy," Transactions of the American Mathematical Society (1998). Click here for more information about Adam Fieldsteel.


Consent of Instructor Required: No

Format: Seminar

Level: GLSP Credits: 3 Enrollment Limit: 18

Texts to purchase for this course:
John D'Angelo & Douglas West, MATHEMATICAL THINKING: PROBLEM-SOLVING AND PROOFS (Prentice-Hall), Cloth


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