Welcome to the course web page for the Fall 2011 manifestation of MA2000: Introduction to Formal Mathematics at Plymouth State University.
What is this course all about?
Focuses on understanding and appropriate use of formal mathematical language. Intended for mathematics majors and students interested in the study of mathematics. The primary objective of this course is to introduce new mathematics majors to the formal language of mathematics. In addition, we will develop problem-solving skills by tackling problems from a variety of contexts. Moreover, we will address questions such as:
- What is mathematics?
- How do you typeset mathematics?
- What resources (with an emphasis on technology) are available to mathematicians?
- What career options does someone with a mathematics major have?
Lastly, the purpose of any mathematics class is to challenge and train the mind. Learning mathematics enhances critical thinking and problem solving skills.
In this course, everyone will be required to
- read and interact with course notes on your own;
- write up quality solutions/proofs to assigned problems;
- present proofs on the board to the rest of the class;
- participate in discussions centered around a student's presentation;
- call upon your own prodigious mental faculties to respond in flexible, thoughtful, and creative ways to problems that may seem unfamiliar on first glance.
As the semester progresses, it should become clear to you what the expectations are. This will be new to many of you and there may be some growing pains associated with it. For more details, see the syllabus.
There are many resources available to get help. First, I recommend that you work on homework in groups as much as possible and to come see me whenever necessary. Also, you are strongly encouraged to ask questions in the course forum on our Moodle page, as I will post comments there for all to benefit from.
To effectively post to the course forum, you will need to learn the basics of LaTeX, the standard language for typesetting in the mathematics community. See the Quick LaTeX guide for help with $\LaTeX$. If you need additional help with $\LaTeX$, post a question in the course forum on our Moodle page.
You can also visit the Math Activity Center, which is located in Hyde 351. This student-run organization provides peer tutoring services for most 1000 and 2000 level math courses and some 3000 level courses. Tutors are typically math majors interested in teaching math and practicing their instructional skills. You can drop in anytime during open hours.
Lastly, you can always .