2020-2021 University Catalog 
    
    Jun 25, 2022  
2020-2021 University Catalog archived

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MATH 100 - The Art of Mathematical Thinking: An Introduction to the Beauty and Power of Mathematical Ideas

Credits: 3 in fall and winter; 3 or 4 in spring. Topics vary from term to term. Mathematics is a creative process whose artistic outcome is often a powerful tool for the sciences. This course gives you a new perspective into the world of mathematics while also developing your analytical reasoning skills. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Spring 2021, MATH 100-01: The Art of Mathematical Thinking: A Brief Voyage to the 4th Dimension (4).  A beginning look at the geometry of 4-dimensional Euclidean space, including learning some tools for studying 4-dimensional objects, and beginning to understand the difficulties in “seeing” such objects. Students also begin measuring in this 4-dimensional setting. The last week of the course is devoted to group projects and presentations. (FM) Beanland.

Spring 2021, MATH 100-02: The Art of Mathematical Thinking: Solving Puzzles and Games Using Mathematics (3). Any high school mathematics class is sufficient preparation for this material. Students gain a new perspective into the world of mathematics while also developing their analytical and creative reasoning skills. In so doing, they gain an understanding of how theoretical results and concepts can be developed, used for problem-solving or for further investigation, and then how to clearly and coherently communicate their ideas and discoveries to others. In this course, we focus on mathematical reasoning to analyze various puzzles and games, which then leads to figuring out how to increase our chances of winning. The springboard for our discussion comes from the answers to the following questions: 1) Is there a good way to predict the winner of a game before the game ends? 2) Is there a strategy that will improve a player’s chance of winning a game? 3) Is the game fair? The answers depend on what we mean by good and fair. We start by carefully and precisely formulating environments in which we can discuss approaches to solving puzzles and playing games. Then, we contemplate criteria that capture the notions of goodness and fairness within these environments. Along the way, students learn the importance of precise definitions and consistent rules of logic in mathematical reasoning. (FM) Finch-Smith.


Winter 2021, MATH 100-02: The Art of Mathematical Thinking: Mathematical Perspectives on Art (3). A fusion of mathematical ideas with practical aspects of fine art, designed for liberal arts students and highly activity-based. Each subject begins with a hands-on art activity to introduce the mathematics being taught. (FM) McRae.

 

Fall 2020, MATH 100-01: The Art of Mathematical Thinking: Viewpoints: Mathematical Perspective and Fractal Geometry in Art (3). A fusion of mathematical ideas with practical aspects of fine art, designed for liberal arts students and highly activity-based. Each subject begins with a hands-on art activity to introduce the mathematics being taught. Beginning with the use of perspective, not only in drawing but also in viewing perspective paintings, the exercises serve as motivation for our study of geometry and projective geometry, completing this section with anamorphic art. We then move into fractal geometry in nature and art. (FM) McRae.
 
Fall 2020, MATH 100-02: The Art of Mathematical Thinking: Viewpoints: Mathematical Perspective and Fractal Geometry in Art (3). A fusion of mathematical ideas with practical aspects of fine art, designed for liberal arts students and highly activity-based. Each subject begins with a hands-on art activity to introduce the mathematics being taught. Beginning with the use of perspective, not only in drawing but also in viewing perspective paintings, the exercises serve as motivation for our study of geometry and projective geometry, completing this section with anamorphic art. We then move into fractal geometry in nature and art. (FM) McRae.
  FDR: FM



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