ABOUT THE COURSE |
BASIC INFORMATION |
ASSESSMENT |
LATE ASSIGNMENTS |
HOMEWORK |
QUIZZES |
EXAMS |
SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIAL |
CONDUCT |
NOTE: all course policies announced here are subject to change before the first day of semester!
Typical objects studied in combinatorics include permutations (arrangements of distinct objects in various different orders), graphs (networks consisting of nodes, some pairs of which are joined), and finite sets and their subsets.
There are many subfields of combinatorics, such as enumerative (e.g., in how many ways can n objects in a row be rearranged, such that no object is returned to its original position?), structural (e.g., when is it possible to travel around a network, visiting each edge once and only once?), and extremal (e.g., what's the largest number of subsets of a set of size n that can be choosen in such a way that any two of them have at least one element in common?). In this course, we will explore each of these aspects of combinatorics, and maybe some more as time permits.
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I will not consider requests for homework extensions, or make-up quizzes and/or exams, except in the case of legitimate, university-sanctioned conflicts. It is your responsibility to let me know the full details of these conflicts before they cause you to miss an assignment! Excepting university-sanctioned conflicts, it is your responsibility to be in class for all scheduled lectures.
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Homework assignments will be posted here in a single file that will be updated throughout the semester. This file will also be where homework solutions are posted.
The weekly homework is an important part of the course; it gives you a chance to think more deeply about the material, and to go from seeing (in lectures) to doing. It's also your opportunity to show me that you are engaging with the course topics.
Homework is an essential part of your learning in this course, so please take it very seriously. It is extremely important that you keep up with the homework, as if you do not, you may quickly fall behind in class and find yourself at a disadvantage during exams.
You should treat the homework as a learning opportunity, rather than something you need to get out of the way. Reread, revise, and polish your solutions until they are correct, concise, efficient, and elegant. This will really deepen your understanding of the material. I encourage you to talk with your colleagues about homework problems, but your final write-up must be your own work.
Homework solutions should be complete (and in particular presented in complete sentences), with all significant steps justified. The homework solutions should be written on the blank space provided in homework file.
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Quizzes will be posted here in a single file that will be updated throughout the semester. This file will also be where homework solutions are posted.
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Nothing to report yet.
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Here is where I will post any supplementary material for the course, such as slides that I go over in class.
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Class conduct: The lecture room should be a place where you should feel free to engage in lively discussion about the course topic; don't be shy! But non course related interruptions should be kept to a minimum. In particular, you should turn off or switch to silent all phones, etc., before the start of class. If for some good reason you need to have your phone on during class, please mention it to me in advance.
A general comment: Like many other endeavors (such as driving a car or mastering a piece of software), mathematics is something that you learn by doing. Attending class and reading the appropriate sections of the textbook is very important, but isn't enough to do well. After each lecture you should work through every example and proof from your class notes. Don't be perturbed if you have to re-read and re-do some topics many times before you begin to feel that you are mastering them. That is just how mathematical learning goes. It's a slow process, but a worthwhile one.
If after struggling with a topic you still feel like you are making no headway, don't give up! Leave it aside for a while to let your unconscious brain work on it. Then go back to it, and talk it over with you colleagues, and come talk to me. It's what I'm here for!
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