Course: Math 245, Spring 2012.
Instructor: Christopher Hanusa -- email firstname.lastname@example.org --
Office Kiely Hall 409
Meeting Times: Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:50–12:05 in KY 283.
Course Web Site: http://people.qc.cuny.edu/faculty/christopher.hanusa/courses/245sp12/
Link to Blackboard: Blackboard
Textbook: Concepts of Mathematical Modeling by Walter J. Meyer (Dover Edition, ISBN
0486435156) Search multiple booksellers here
Amazon offers to students a free one-year subscription to "Amazon Prime", which allows you to receive books sold directly from Amazon within two business days for free! Sign up here. Make sure your order says "Eligible for Amazon Prime / Free Super Saver Shipping". Our book is here
Software: Mathematica (learn about Mathematica access on MyQC)
This class covers: Various sections of the book, along with Mathematica tutorials.
Homework is due weekly and is the key component to your learning of
the material, so DO IT!!! Each homework will be posted on the course web page the previous week.
The written homeworks contribute towards your homework grade.
They will consist (normally) of five questions. I expect all answers to be fully justified, unless otherwise
noted. Each of the problems will be graded on a scale from 0-4, as follows:
I require you to follow some relatively strict guidelines.
It is especially important that your homework be legible and clearly presented, or I may not grade it.
||A well-written solution with slight errors.
||A good partial solution.
||A very partial solution or a good start.
||No work, a weak start, or an unsupported answer.
It is important to learn how to express yourself in the
language of mathematics. In the homework, you should show your work and explain how
you did the problem. This is the difference between an Answer
and a Solution. It should be obvious to the person reading the homework how you
went about doing the problem. This will often involve writing out explanations for your
work in words. Imagine that you need an example to help refresh your memory for another
class in six months!
Late Written Homework:
I understand that outside factors may affect your ability to turn in
your homework on time. During the semester you will be allowed five total grace days. If a homework is due on
Wednesday and you turn it in on Friday, this counts as two of your five grace days. Once you have zero grace
days, I will not accept late homework. If you are not planning to be in class, let me know and get it to
me beforehand. This is your responsibility. I can accept clearly scanned homework by email.
In addition to the homeworks, you will be working in a group of around three students, where you will use the
techniques from class to model a real-life situation of your choosing. Click here for more information.
It is useful to form study groups to work on homework.
Be sure to include an acknowledgment to your groupmates on your homework.
At the beginning the problems will seem easy enough to plug and chug on your own,
but as the quarter progresses the questions become quite complex indeed.
Study groups good. Copying solutions bad. When a group works on a problem, everyone can participate.
But when you write up the answers to the problems, write it up in your own way.
I will take off points from all parties if multiple solutions are the same.
Study groups have several advantages:
- You can practice and learn how to solve more problems in less time (doing as many problems as possible is the key to success),
- The best way to really learn something is to explain it to someone else (misunderstandings that you never knew you had will appear under someone else's questioning),
- No two people solve the same problem the same way; in a group, you may discover new and more efficient ways to solve the same problem,
- seeing that others also struggle with this material helps to put your own level of understanding in a better perspective and will hopefully reduce some of your
- in making the homework assignments, I assume that you will be working in groups.
There will be two exams during the semester.
They will be a class period in length and no calculators or study aides are allowed (or are necessary).
There will be no make-up exam except in the case of a documented emergency.
In the event of an unavoidable conflict with the midterm (an athletic meet, wedding, funeral, etc...),
you must notify me at least one week before the date of the exam so that we can arrange for you
to take the exam BEFORE the actual exam date.
- Class Participation: 10% (This entails regular attendance, staying engaged, and asking questions)
- Written Homework: 19%
- Exam 1: 18%
- Exam 2: 18%
- Written Project: 25%
- Project Presentation: 10%
I am happy to help you with your homework and other class-related questions during my office hours. I have official
office hours as posted on my schedule. In addition, you are welcome to make an
appointment or stop by my office in Kiely 409 at any time.