First year seminar in mathematical sciences
M192: fall 2011

Professor: Dr. Rachel Pries
e-mail: pries ATSYMBOL math DOT colostate DOT edu
web page:
office: Weber 118

Lecture: TR 4:00-4:50, Engineering E203. code 63246.
Office hours: 2-3 pm each Wednesday and Thursday, or by appointment in Weber 118.

Course description:
The main goal of this course is to orient new majors to the math department at CSU.
Another goal is for everyone to develop skills in solving unfamiliar problems with creative insight and logical reasoning.
We will learn some proof techniques as a foundation for courses within the major.
Several faculty will give guest lectures to explain their favorite topics in math.

Text: Course handouts.

Course requirements:
Daily participation.
Homework 1: due 9/1.
Homework 2: due 9/15.
Homework 3: due 9/29.
Guest lecture report: due 10/11.
Poster biography: due 10/13.

Grading: The course grades will be computed as follows.
Homeworks 1,2,3, the guest lecture report and the poster biography are each worth 20%.
Borderline grades will be decided on the basis of class participation.

Homework and classroom policies: Homework must be neat, legible, and stapled in order to receive credit.
You may brainstorm the problems with two other people but need to write up your solutions independently.
During lecture, please pay attention even if the material is incomprehensible or boring.
It is unacceptable to use your phone or computer, to read the newspaper or play sudoku, etc
If you are late, come quietly into the back of class.

Help: Help is always available if you have trouble with homework or lecture material.
If your classmates can't answer your question, come ask me!
Office hours are 2-3 pm each Wednesday and Thursday, or by appointment, in Weber 118.

Tentative Syllabus:
T8/23 Course introduction
R8/25 Why proofs? day 1
T8/30 Why proofs? day 2
R9/1 Induction day 1
T9/6 Induction day 2
R9/8 Guest lecture: Professor Patrick Shipman
T9/13 Guest lecture: Professor Dan Bates (to be confirmed)
R9/15 Intersections day 1
T9/20 Guest lecture: Professor James Wilson
R9/22 Guest lecture: Professor Ross McConnell (to be confirmed)
T9/27 Intersections day 2
R9/29 Guest lecture: Professor Yongcheng Zhou
T10/4 Patterns with primes day 1
R10/6 Guest lecture: Professor Jennifer Mueller
T10/11 Patterns with primes day 2
R10/13 Poster presentation