MA 166-01, MA 166-02 SYLLABUS


Instructor: Dr.Marc Lipman

Office: KT 277, tel. 481-6987, e-mail:

Office Hours:  TR:  noon-1:00 pm, W:  1110-noon, and by appointment.


Classes:  All meetings (except the final exam) are in KT 216.  Please note that MW times and TR times are different.

MA 166-01:  MW 9:00 am - 9:50 am and TR 9:00 am-10:15 am

MA 166-02:  MW 10:00 am-10:50 am and TR 10:30 am-11:45 am


Textbook:  James Stewart – Essential Calculus: Early Transcendentals


Course Description: The course covers chapters 6-9 of the text and a departmental handout on complex numbers. The main content of the course is devoted to techniques of integration, applications of integration, infinite sequences and series, polar coordinates, complex numbers, and conic sections. The objectives of the course are to master the topics therein, and through that mastery improve problem solving skills and critical thinking.

How your grade will be determined:  There will be four tests (100 points each), at least ten quizzes (contributing the sum of your quiz scores up to a maximum of 100 points), and a comprehensive final (200 points).   This gives a denominator of 700 points.  You begin with a numerator of 0, and each test and quiz is an opportunity to increase your numerator.  Letter grades will be assigned according to your fraction, as follows:

A:  1.0  to  .9;  B:  < . 9  to  .8;  C:  < .8  to  .7;  D:  < .7  to  .6;  F:  < .6.

No make up quizzes will be given.  Exams can be made up only with an acceptable explanation as to why the exam will be or was missed.  There are many such.  For example:  “I’d like to arrange in advance for a make-up exam.  I will miss Thursday’s test because I’m representing IPFW in an official capacity (attending a conference, playing on an IPFW team, …),”  is acceptable.  For example:  “I missed Thursday’s test because I had Wednesday plane tickets to Lauderdale for spring break,” is not acceptable.   


Office hours:  The professor has them because he wants you to take advantage of his interest and expertise.  He is delighted when students come to see him with interesting mathematical problems to work on, or to just talk about food and sports and politics.  He is less thrilled when students come to ask him to do their homework for them.  The posted hours belong to the students.  If students cannot meet the professor during those hours, he is pleased to see them at mutually convenient times. 


Homework:  Homework is the responsibility of the student.  It will be discussed in class because that is a good way for students to verify their understanding and correct misunderstandings.  The professor uses the quizzes to assess how well the students use their homework to learn the material.  The professor has the hard-earned wisdom of many years at the front of a classroom.  He makes the following categorical statement:  It is not possible to pass this course without doing a lot of homework.  The problems on the tests and the quizzes will be similar to the homework.  Therefore doing homework is its own reward.  That is what homework is for.  To take full advantage of the opportunity, the professor encourages the formation of study groups, of collaborative efforts to learn the material, of the development of good time management and organizational skills, as well as effective study and work habits. 


Tips for success:  1) Go to class.  2) Read the textbook.  It’s expensive, you might as well get some value from it.  Do this as part of your routine for the course.  The best way to spend reading time is to look at a section before it is discussed it in class.  That way you will know the topic beforehand, any new vocabulary, and which things are important.  There’s a reason why a textbook is more than the problems at the end of a section.   3)  Go to class.  4) Study in loops.  This is how the professor does research and learns new mathematics.  What this means is that you should routinely revisit material to see the relationship between what you’ve just studied and what you learned last week and last month.  Mathematics is hierarchical:  The new is built upon the old.  It is impossible to learn algebra without a solid foundation in arithmetic.  It is impossible to learn calculus without a solid foundation in algebra and geometry.  Similarly, it is impossible to learn applications of integration without understanding what integration means, and impossible to actually solve the problems you want to solve without the mechanics of integration (or for that matter section 176 without an understanding of section 175, 174, ….).  Regular, systematic review ties the course material together.  By the way, it is also the single best way to prepare for a comprehensive final exam.   5)  Go to class.


How to learn mathematics:   This is a deep, dark secret. Those of us in the Math Cabal have a duty to keep math scary to those not math-literate.  Do not read this paragraph unless you are willing to keep these secrets.  Otherwise the math mystique is lost.   One learns to use a hammer by driving many nails.  One gets better with experience.  Good carpenters never leave owl eyes, always use the right nail for the particular job, and don’t strike harder or more often than necessary.   That’s not how they started out.  Successful users of mathematics learn techniques over time and with much practice.  For example, one technique is the standard protocol for addressing real-world problems (which are modeled in the course by word problems:   1)  Read the problem.  This does not mean look at the problem.  You have three primary goals when reading the problem.  The most important of these is to find out what the answer looks like.   If the problem is to determine the volume of a nasty-looking auto part, the answer had better look like a volume.  Second, you need to discover what information the problem provides you to work with.  Third, you want to determine what kind of problem you’re working on.  Does the problem look like something geometric, something algebraic, does it decompose in a way that suggests integration, or does it seem to be nothing you’ve ever seen before (If so, you must either look further afield or invent something.  Welcome to real life.)?  2)  Draw a diagram or otherwise organize what you know.  This includes carefully choosing labels and variable names that help provide insight into the problem’s structure.  3)  Find relationships between what you know and what you need to find.  This is the creative portion of the problem, and hence the most fun.  This may require cutting the problem into subproblems, each of which requires using the entire problem solving process.  4)  Use the appropriate tool or tools to exploit the relationships found in step three to get information about what you need to find.  5) Finish.    Do you have the right kind of answer?  Is it credible?  Is the presentation in a form that is appropriate?  Is this just part of the whole problem?  If so don’t forget the other parts.


Course philosophy:  This course is ambitious.  The professor wants you to do well and have an enjoyable, worthwhile experience doing something he loves.  He is happy to help you enter the secret Math Cabal.  He will teach the secret handshake to those who faithfully desire to enter the sacred halls.  He has already revealed some of the Cabal’s secrets to you (see Tips for Success and How to learn mathematics .).  He will lead you to the mathematical portals, though you yourself must choose to work your way across the threshold.  The goal of the course is not to merely be able to do some problems appearing in some textbook.  No one will either admire you or hire you because you can do number 43 on page 687.  The goal is for you to become intimate with the theoretical ideas of the course topics and facile with the tools necessary to take advantage of that intimacy.  Therefore, while the mechanics of integration, power series, and the other topics in the course are important, our emphasis will always be on what to use this mathematics for and how to take advantage of those mechanics.


Students with Disabilities: If you have a disability and need assistance, special arrangements can be made to accommodate most needs. Contact the Director of Services for Students with Disabilities (Walb 113, telephone number 481-6658), as soon as possible to work out the details. Once the Director has provided you with a letter attesting to your needs for modification, bring the letter to me. For more information, please visit the web site for SSD at .