Math 486: Modern Algebra II, Spring 2008


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Instructor: Erin McNicholas

Course Logistics

Room:  Collins 307 Room:  Collins 201
Phone:  370-6590 Time:  M, W, F 12:40-1:40
Email:  emcnicho(at) Mailgroup:  math-486-01(at)
Homepage: Textbook:  Contemporary Abstract Algebra, 6ed. by Gallian
Office Hours:   Mon 2-3pm, Tues 10-11am, Fri 2-3pm or by appointment

Course Objectives / Big Questions:

Is there an abstraction of the ideas running through a number of disparate areas of mathematics which, when accurately defined, gives greater insight into these individual areas?  Does this abstraction allow for discoveries which apply to the whole without consideration of the characteristics which distinguish the parts?  By reaching the level of abstraction which Modern Algebra provides, we'll explore some of the most beautiful and unifying results in mathematics.  


  • Master the abstraction necessary for working with Fields

  • Strengthen our understanding by exploring concrete instances of abstract ideas

  • Gain an appreciation for the power of abstract algebra

  • Build upon our logic, presentation, and proof writing skills



Just for fun: 

Finite Simple Group of Order 2 (YouTube)

Mathematics Colloquium Schedule