MA 114-003
Introduction to Finite Mathematics with Applications
Fall 2013 Syllabus
When and Where
Time: MW 3:00 to 4:15 p.m.
Place: SAS 2203
Instructor
Name: Stephen Schecter
E-mail address: schecter@ncsu.edu
Office location: SAS 3226
Office hours: 10:15 - 11:05 a.m. MTWHF
Office telephone number: 515-6533
Office fax number: 513-7336
Teaching Assistants
Course Description
Elementary matrix algebra including operations, inverses, and systems of equations; introduction to linear programming including the simplex method; sets and counting techniques; elementary probability including conditional probability; Markov chains; game theory; applications in the behavioral, managerial and biological sciences.
Prerequisite
Text and access to MyMathLab
Goldstein, Schneider, and Segal, Finite Mathematics and Its Applications, 11th edition, Pearson, 2013. (Not the 10th edition.)
This course has computer-graded homework assignments available through MyMathLab. (We will not use WebAssign.) You will need an Access Code to log in to MyMathLab. MyMathLab also has an online version of our text.
There are several options for buying the text and Access Code.
- Buy a new text from the NC State bookstore. Cost: $118.15 for looseleaf, $175.65 for hardcover (prices on July 19, 2013). The text will include your Access Code.
- Buy or rent a new or used text elsewhere (for example, from Amazon). Warning: If you do this, your text may not come with an Access Code. (The NC State bookstore web site does not make this clear.) In this case, you will have to buy the Access Code separately. If you obtain your text elsewhere, make sure that you can return it for a full refund if there is not a useable Access Code.
- Buy the Access Code from the NC State bookstore. Cost: $113.75 (prices on July 19, 2013). You will not have a text, but the MyMathLab website has an online version of our text.
- Buy nothing. Eventually you will register at the MyMathLab website using information I will give you. When you do this, according to the local representative of the publisher, you will have the opportunity to purchase an Access Code for $91.30. I have not been able to verify this.
Schedule
The schedule of lecture topics, tests, and the final exam is here.
Attendance
Attendance at all meetings of the class is expected. Students are expected to arrive on time, to contribute to the learning environment, and to stay until the class ends.
We will make a seating chart on Wednesday, August 28. Please decide by then where you would like to sit. We will use the seating chart to take attendance and to pass back tests.
The attendance record is used to answer inquiries by University administrators. It is not used in grading.
MyMathLab
We will use MyMathLab
for graded homework assignments and for various types of help with the class. In addition, you can check your grades (both homework and tests) on MyMathLab. Once you register for MyMathLab, you should think of our MyMathLab site as the course web site. All course information and announcements will be there.
Directions for registering for MyMathLab are here. Registration opens on August 14. Do not register more than once.
On MyMathLab you will find:
- Course syllabus and general information (this page).
- Schedule of lectures and tests
- Online text and related videos.
- Homework assignments.
- Publisher's study plans.
- Publisher's practice quizzes and tests.
- Gradebook for checking your grades. Please let me know if you find anything wrong.
- Document sharing. I may post useful documents here.
- Discussions.
- Announcements (in the middle of the page)
For more information about how to do homework, how to use the study plan, and taking practice tests, go to the MyMathLab course home and click on Help and Support at the upper right. Then click on Student Help if necessary. Another source about how MyMathLab homework works: on the MyMathLab course home page, click on "How to Enter Answers."
MyMathLab homework assignments will become available throughout the semester. Each assignment has a due date. Problems finished by the due date receive full credit. You can work on any remaining problems after the due date for half credit.
Each student has slightly different problems, so correct answers will differ.
When you submit an answer to a MyMathLab question, MyMathLab will tell you if it is right or wrong. You may submit up to four answers to each question. Only your last answer counts toward your grade on the assignment.
MyMathLab offers many features to help you do the problems. Next to each problem you will find buttons labeled "Help Me Solve This" (step-by-step explanation), View an Example (a similar problem worked out), Ask My Instructor, etc. Please make use of these features when you need them!
The first assignment, "Introduction to MyMathLab," will be available a week before the course starts for students who like to get an early start.
Here you will find practice questions ("Practice") and quizzes to test mastery ("Quiz Me") on each section of the text. You may want to use the practice questions and quizzes before doing homework, or you may want to use them when you are practicing for tests.
In addition, there are practice questions and quizzes on an orientation to the course (Ch. 0: Orientation Questions for Students), and on five subjects you may want to review before the course starts (Ch. GR: Getting Ready for Finite Mathematics: GR.1 through GR.5).
When you do the practice quizzes, "mastery points" are recorded in the Gradebook. These do not count toward your grade.
- Practice quizzes and tests
Here you will find, for each chapter:
- Getting Ready for the Chapter Quiz. This is material you should know before beginning the Chapter.
- Chapter Pre-Test, Review Quiz, and Post-Test. These are all quizzes you can take to review for a test.
Use these however you want. They do not count toward your grade.
Initially I've provided three "Discussion Topics": Using MyMathLab, Chapter 1, and Chapter 2. You can post questions, comments, and responses under these topics. More topics will follow.
Additional Homework
When I think that the MyMathLab assignments are not sufficient to learn the material, I will assign additional problems from the text. These problems will not be graded, but you can ask about them in class.
Help with the Course
For tutoring and other help options, click here and look under "Help with Your Math Class".
Tests
There will be four hour tests and a final exam. For dates see the schedule.
Please bring a blue book when you take a test. If you do not, we will still grade your test, but we will not be responsible if part of it is lost.
On all tests that you turn in for this course, you must show your work to receive credit. Calculators may be used for arithmetic only.
If you miss a test, I will need a letter documenting the reason. Makeup tests will only be given for reasons such as illness, family emergency, participation in a University-sponsored event, required court attendance or military duty, or religious observances as certified by the Department of Student Development.
If you know you will be absent on a test date, you must clear the absence with me in advance. In the case of an unanticipated absence on a test date, you should give me documentation as soon as possible.
See the University policy on attendance and scroll down to "Excused Absences."
Grading
At the end of the course, you will have six grades: Homework, four hour tests, and the final exam.
Your Homework grade will be raised by 5 points. However, the maximum will still be 100.
- Homework counts 1/6 of your grade.
- Each of the four hour tests counts 1/6 of your grade.
- The final exam counts as 1/3 of your grade.
- The fractions add up to 1 1/6. We adjust as follows:
- If the lowest of your six grades is Homework, it is dropped.
- If the lowest of your six grades is an hour test, it is dropped.
- If the lowest of your six grades is the final exam, it only counts as 1/6 of your grade.
Academic Integrity
Students with Disabilities
Information on NC State services for students with disabilities can be found here.
Last modified Mon Aug 19 2013
Send questions or comments to schecter@math.ncsu.edu