Spring 2012 MATH 191 001 SEM

Experimental Courses in Mathematics
Units/CreditFinal Exam GroupEnrollment
4NONELimit:16 Enrolled:16 Waitlist:0 Avail Seats:0 [on 05/03/12]

Restrictions: CURRENTLY FULL

Note: Also: HUTCHINGS, M

Additional Information: 

Office: 741 Evans
Office Hours: TBA
Prerequisites: Ability to write proofs and willingness to work on
open-ended problems a must. Math 55 required and at least one 100 level
math course strongly preferred.
Syllabus: Inspired by the knots that appear in daily life, knot theory is the
study of mathematical knots. Today, mathematical knots are of
fundamental importance to modern geometry and have found applications in
biology, chemistry, and physics as well. Moreover, easily stated open
questions about knots abound, and much of the theory can be explained at
an elementary level. As such, knot theory provides an ideal gateway
into mathematical research.

This class will take advantage of this to give students experience doing
research-type mathematics. Students will learn about knot theory and
then apply their knowledge to hard, open-ended problems. Many of the
problems will be very visual and hands-on in nature.
Course Webpage: To be announced.
Grading: One short and one long project. Weekly progress
reports, an in-class presentation, and a final write-up using LaTex will
be required for each project. Exercises will occasionally be assigned.
Comments: Each student will have considerable latitude in finding
problems that fit his or her interest. Students will work in small
groups on these problems, with the majority of this work completed
outside of class. Each group will be expected to discuss its progress
weekly during office hours.