THE UNIVERSITY OF AKRON
3450:135-002 Excursions in Mathematics
(formerly Mathematics for Liberal Arts)
Fall, 2004

 INSTRUCTOR Dr. J. Adler OFFICE College of Arts & Sciences 269 PHONE 330-972-6779 FAX 330-374-8630 E-MAIL adler at uakron dot edu OFFICE HOURS MWF 2:30-3:15, MW 4-5, or by appointment TEXTBOOKS Excursions in Modern Mathematics (5th ed), by Tannenbaum, 2004. How to Lie With Statistics, by Huff. WEB PAGE http://www.math.uakron.edu/~adler/excursions

## Course Objective

We will use contemporary applications of mathematics to develop skills in logical thinking, technical reading, and figuring out things that you've never seen before.

## Course Policies

1. If you have any questions or concerns about this course, contact me. But if you want me to answer a question that is answered on this sheet or on the sheet of rules for term papers, you'll have to donate 25 cents to the Class Snack Fund.

2. Homework assignments (material to read and problems to do) are assigned daily. You should have them available for possible grading at the next class meeting. I will not accept late homework for any reason; instead, I will drop your five lowest homework grades. I encourage you to work with your classmates. However, you must write up your solutions yourself.

3. A paper will be due late in the semester. See another handout for more information.

4. There will be five tests during the semester. There will be a comprehensive final exam on Monday, December 13, at 8:00am(!), at a place to be announced. No make-up tests will be available.

5. At the beginning of class, you may submit written questions about the current homework assignment or any recently-covered material. However, you must prepare such questions in advance, and have them ready when I ask for them. (This is part of being prepared for class.) I won't entertain questions of the form, ``How do you do number 6?'' Be more specific. (If questions occur to you during class, feel free to ask them on the spot.)

 5 Tests 50% in all Homework 25% Paper 10% Final Exam 15%

• Scale: A 90% > B 80% > C 70% > D 60%.
• Keep a record of all of your grades in this class. If you want to discuss your grade at any time, I expect you to bring this record with you.
• Plus and minus grades will be given at my discretion.
• Borderline cases will be decided based on attendance and participation.
• If your overall average at the time of the final exam would give you a grade of A- or better, then you do not need to take the final exam.
• You can only receive a grade of Incomplete if you have at least a C average on work completed and are unable to finish the course due to circumstances beyond your control. The Dean's Office must approve all Incompletes.

• Academic dishonesty will be dealt with harshly.

7. Registration/withdrawal: In order to participate, you must be registered by September 13. October 22 is the last day to withdraw without my signature. I will only sign withdrawal forms for students who are actively participating in the course, and who request a signature by Wednesday, November 17.

8. Free tutoring is available. Call or visit the Tutoring Office, Carroll Hall, Room 215A, (330) 972-6552. They are not well set up to deal with some of the material in this course, but Chapters 13 and 14 should be no problem for them.

In order to do well in this course, it is not necessary to be smart in math (though of course it helps). It is necessary to be smart about being a student. This includes:

• Making full use of the resources available to you: your teacher, your classmates, your books, other books, etc.
• Doing all of the assignments.
• Keeping track of how well you are doing. It is virtually impossible to pass the course without passing at least two of the first three tests.
• Aiming for an A. That way, if you slip up, you get a B, and if you bomb, you get a C, neither of which is a tragedy. Most students in this course feel that they cannot possibly get an A. Invariably, some of them go on to do just that. Why not you?