MATH 101 Introduction to Mathematical Sciences (3)

Catalog Description:

The course is designed to introduce students to systematic, mathematical thinking as it applies to classical problems in the history of mathematics and as it connects to modern society. Meets the General Education Mathematical Sciences requirement. (Offered each semester.)


Prerequisites:


None (knowledge of high school algebra is assumed)

Required Course Materials:


Instructors use one of the following textbooks in the course:

Peter Tannenbaum, Excursions in Modern Mathematics, 7th edition, Prentice Hall, 2010 (ISBN: 9780321568038)

COMP, For All Practical Purposes: Mathematical Literacy in Today's World, 9th edition, W. H. Freeman, 2013 (ISBN: 9781464162800)

Course Coordinator:


Angela C. Hare, Ph.D., Professor of Mathematics

Course Audience:


The typical course audience is students majoring in behavioral sciences, social sciences, languages, fine arts, and elementary education.

 

Course Objectives:

 

  1. To acquire an appreciation for the patterns of mathematics and their inherent beauty.
  2. To develop an understanding and appreciation for the distinctive methods and modes of reasoning of the mathematical sciences.
  3. To improve problem solving skills of many types.
  4. To develop competency in the process of making appropriate conjectures, finding suitable means to test those conjectures and drawing conclusions about their validity.
  5. To recognize the human origins of mathematics through the integration of historical material related to various other course topics.
  6. To develop skill in communication of mathematical ideas through class discussion and short expository written exercises.
  7. To recognize the interplay of the algebraic/verbal and geometric/visual aspects of mathematics and to learn to exploit them in concert for deeper understanding of concepts and problems.

General Education Objectives for the Mathematical Sciences Courses:

  1. To introduce students to the methods and philosophy of the mathematical sciences.
  2. To introduce students to at least one of the three mathematical sciences of computing, mathematics and statistics from a liberal arts perspective.
  3. To help students develop logical, analytical, and abstract thinking through quantitative problem solving activities.
  4. To integrate student use of the computer as a tool in the pursuit of the above objectives.

 

Topics:

This course is designed to introduce students to systematic, mathematical thinking as it applies to classical problems in the history of mathematics and as it connects to modern society. We will study topics in some or all of the following areas:
  1. Management science: planning, scheduling, producing efficiently.
  2. Statistics: producing and exploring data, understanding probability, statistical inference.
  3. Coding information: using numbers for identification and transmitting information.
  4. Social choice: election methods, weighted voting, fair division.
  5. Consumer finance models.
  6. Size and shape: symmetry and patterns, tiling the plane.
  7. Logic.

 

 

Revised: October 2013 (textbook); AH September 2010

Return to Course Index