MATH 499 - MATHEMATICS SEMINAR
Tuesday 11:00-11:50, MC 415
Instructor: Dr. Milan Luki´c
Office: MC 521
Office Hours: MTWF 12:10-1:00, or by appointment
Phone: (608) 796-3659 (Office); 787-5464 (Home)
Course Description: (from the catalog) Selected topics of current interest in mathematics are researched and presented. Students, faculty, and occasional guest speakers share in the presentations. Prerequisite: grades of C or higher in 260 and 320.
Text: William Dunham, Journey through the geniuses, Wiley, New York,
Course-level Outcomes. Students shall become acquainted with some of the best mathematicians of all time and their contributions in solving important, difficult problems.
Content: Presentation of some of the work of Archimedes, Euclid, Fermat, Newton, Leibniz, Euler, . . .
Mathematical Reasoning: Students will try to achieve an in-depth understanding of the ideas of the great mathematicians presented. This includes making sure statements and claims made are checked for accuracy, and an appropriate justification is given.
Problem Solving: Even though, the focus will be on presenting solutions to certain problems that others (the great mathematicians) made, the process
of trying to understand those solutions will involve solving some “smaller” problems . . .
Communication: The main mode of communication in this course will be oral - through in-class presentations. No exams!
Technology: We will use technology in this class to typeset two papers. A homework from another class is acceptable. One of this papers is to be
typeset using Microsoft Equation Editor, the other one using LATEX. Course Philosophy and Procedure. I expect you to take turns in presenting material from the textbook, roughly one chapter per week.
We are going to look into the work of ”Bethovens” of mathematics. The main thing I expect from you is to make an effort to understand problems and ideas involved to be able to appreciate the work of those great minds. This understanding
2 MATH 499 - MATHEMATICS SEMINAR FALL 2004
will enable you to participate in those great achievements of human intellect, and I am sure that the pleasure of doing that will be very rewarding.
In terms of your presentations, I expect you to be prepared and clear. A concise biography sketch of the individual in question is expected, and at least one problem that illustrates some of the work of that individual is to be fully presented.
Grading Grading will be based on your presentations, plus the two written papers. Regular attendance is assumed. The only grade I expect to give in this course is an A. However, missing classes, failing to come prepared, or failing in some of the basic mathematics involved (Calculus, College Algebra, Trigonometry) will lower the grade. In any such case (other than missed classes), an opportunity to do a makeup work will be given.
1. The University facilities and policies
Important University Policies: Please follow the links at:
http://my.execpc.com/~lmilan/viterbo-policies.htmland read the corresponding statements on attendance, plagiarism, and sexual harassment.
Americans with Disability Act:: If you are a person with a disability and require any auxiliary aids, services or other accommodations for this class, please see me and Wayne Wojciechowski in Murphy Center Room 320 (796- 3085) within ten days to discuss your accommodation needs.
Classes begin: August 30.
Midterm break: October 22.
Thanksgiving Vacation: November 24 − 28.
Last day of class: Friday, December 10.
Final Exam: Friday, December 17, 7:40-9:40.
There is no actual final exam. This is just going to be the last meeting of the class, as required by the university policies - see your Schedule of
Classes, the Final Examination Schedule for fall 2004 page.
This syllabus is tentative and may be adjusted during the semester.