Math 251W - Section 1 - Foundations of Advanced Mathematics
Spring '12 - Prof. Mark Janeba
MWF 9:10 - 10:10 a.m.
Office: Ford Hall 216
Phone/Voice Mail: (503) 370-6123
Text: Reasoning and Writing,
of Mathematics, Mark Janeba.
Course Goals:The successful student in this course will, at the end of the semester:
- Be able to recognize and analyze standard methods of argument and proof construction in written material.
- Be able to apply these standard methods to construct accurate,
clear, and precise mathematical arguments and proofs, and be able to
revise and improve those proofs.
- Understand basic set theory, and be able to apply that understanding in analyzing and writing proofs.
- Become proficient at a basic level in the use of modern
typesetting software (i.e. LaTeX), as evidenced by its use in meeting
goals 2 and 3.
- Begin to gain exposure to the broader world of mathematics through participation in the Mathematics Department Colloquia.
For each graded piece of work, I will post cutoff scores for grades of
A-, B-, C, C-, and D. At the end of the term, if your point total is
than the total of the A- cutoffs, your grade will be an A- or better,
so on. Cutoffs will never be higher than this:
|Approximate weighting scheme:
|Best three of five (appx) quizzes at 25 points each:
appx 75 points
|Two or three one-hour exams at 100 points each:
|Formal papers and other written assignments
appx 100 points
|appx 75 points
|Formally written homework, with revision
appx 150 points
|Comprehensive Final exam:
| appx 825-925 points
... but they are often lower.
Exam makeup policy: Quiz or midterm make-ups or
early quizzes or exams are given only for verifiable illness or for university-sanctioned
intercollegiate activities. For collegiate activities, you must see me before
you leave to arrange a makeup time. In any case, you must contact me in
advance except in emergencies.
- Tentative hour exam dates: To be announced
exam: The final is Monday, May 7, 8-11 a.m.
- For borderline grades, I tend to pay more attention to the final
The final exam time is Monday, May 7, 8-11 a.m., as set by the University; early finals will not be
given. Really. I mean it. Please make travel plans
accordingly. If someone else will be making your travel
plans, it would be wise to notify them immediately of your
Papers and other written assignments
Several papers and other writing exercises of varying sizes will be
assigned throughout the course. Drafts may sometimes be collected, and papers and more complex homework
will be rewritten for credit often. Keep in mind that mathematical writing can be very dense,
in that a few words and symbols can carry a great deal of information. The requirements for logic and the
standards of accuracy and precision likely will be higher than in other courses of students' experience. Sometimes
the careful crafting of one mathematical paragraph will take longer than
writing several pages of nonmathematical prose. When we get to particularly
complex writing assignments, we will revise several times.
Quizzes and Participation
Quizzes are 15 to 25 minutes long, with problems that resemble homework.
We will usually have a quiz in any week without an exam or a major paper due.
Please come to class prepared to discuss the previous night's homework. To
gauge students' preparation, there will be a few pop quizzes during
the term pertaining to the reading assignments.
Attendance is figured into your grade as follows: Each
student will start with 25 points for attendance. There is
no deduction for the first 3 absences. Two points are deducted
for the 4th and 5th absences, and three points for the 6th absence
and each subsequent absence. While it is awkward to include
attendance in the class grade, my experience shows that it is a helpful incentive
for many students. I will do my best to make attendance rewarding, both in the
intellectual sense and in participation points.
Homework is assigned daily and generally collected on
the more complex homework assignments, rewrites will be
encouraged. Likewise, you are highly encouraged to come to the
Math Hearth alone or in groups when I'm around for while-you-work
advice. Other faculty are able to help you too! I can help
and comment on homework you have already started, you will be able to
brainstorm with any other classmates who are in attendance, and you
will be able
to work on homework you have not yet finished, with help close at hand.
Departmental Colloquium requirement
As part of this course, students are required to (politely!) attend at
least two departmental colloquia.
Colloquia are one-hour talks,
usually given by visiting speakers, on topics of mathematical
interest. Refreshments are provided! Colloquia are
typically scheduled at 4 p.m. on Thursday afternoons, roughly every two
weeks. They are announced via the math-news listserv, onto which
all students enrolled in this course are added, and via postings in the
math hearth area. If students cannot meet the two-colloquia
requirement, alternative writing assignment(s) will be provided, each
counted in place of one colloquium, but
only if requested before April 18. In short, plan ahead.
Students meeting only half of the colloquium requirement will be
assessed a fifteen (15) point penalty; students meeting none of the
requirement will be assessed a thirty (30) point penalty.
Accommodations for students with disabilities:
Accomodations required by students with disabilities will be provided upon reasonable
advance notice and verification of requirement/eligibility from the
Office of Disability Services
(Bishop Wellness Center). If you forsee needing an accomodation, it is probably
best to inquire at the Office of Disability Services at the start of the semester.
Policy on in-class distractions and cell phones:
It is important to respect the concentration and attention of each student
in the class. Class time is limited, precious, and the tuition is
quite expensive per minute.
Arriving late for class is severely frowned upon, and will be counted
as an absence. Electronic devices, including computers and cell
phones, and anything else not expressly required for the course must be
turned off during class time.
Exceptions include calculators, and special-needs aids such as
lecture-recording devices. If your cell phone rings during
regular class time, you will be required to bring cookies for the entire
class at the next class meeting. During exams and quizzes, the
penalty is more specific: two points for each ring, or one point per
second of audible sound, whichever is greater.
Be aware that many "smart phones" have alarm features that can still
sound when the phone is nominally "off." Such alarms are still
subect to the penalties above. Please help me hold distractions
for your fellow students to an absolute minimum.
Academic Honesty Expectations
All exams and quizzes are to be taken with books and notes closed
as noted on the exam paper), completely on your own. Anything you can
store on your calculator is acceptable at all times, but written notes
are prohibited. Palmtop or laptop computers will not be allowed
On papers: The documentation requirements for each paper will be
In general, plagiarism is any work copied or paraphrased from another
without proper written acknowledgement. Plagiarism is not
and will not be tolerated. Violations will result in a failing
grade for the assignment (at least).
On homework: While I encourage you to discuss methods
of solution to homework problems, copied homework will result in a
failing grade for the assignment for both copies of the work. You
should not see (nor have dictated to you) another student's final draft
of a homework problem until after it has been graded and
returned. On homeworks for which rewrites are accepted, you
should not see another's final draft until after your last rewrite of
that assignment has been submitted.
In keeping with college policy, cheating or plagiarism will be
to the dean (see student handbook). Systematic or organized cheating on
exams will result in course failure. Submission of a paper
by someone other than the submitting student will also be cause for
in the course.
If you are uncertain about some aspect of this policy, it is your
to get clarification from the instructor.
Last Modified January 16, 2012.
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