Math 4010-102
Women and Minorities in Mathematics:
A Course with Significant Mathematical Content
Dr. Sarah J. Greenwald

Office Hours 326 Walker Hall 262-2363
I am always happy to help you in office hours. An open door means that I am on the floor somewhere, so come look for me.

http://www.mathsci.appstate.edu/~sjg/wmm/ Check this for access to the other class web pages. On web pages, an underlined phrase means a link.
http://www.mathsci.appstate.edu/~sjg/wmm/highlights.html Check this after each class meeting for daily class overviews, readings, assignments and due dates.

Dr. Sarah's MAT 1010 WebCT is accessible by password from myWebCT http://www.webct.appstate.edu:8900/webct/public/home.pl after following the lab 1 directions. I usually check the bulletin boards twice a day, even on weekends.

I usually check e-mail once a day during the week. greenwaldsj@cp.appstate.edu is the easiest way to contact me outside of class, office hours and the WebCT bulletin board.

Course Objectives

  • Obtain a survey of mathematics research and multicultural and gender issues in mathematics through readings, classroom activities and the presentations on the lives and mathematics of women and minority mathematicians.
  • Obtain significant mathematical content by reading mathematics research articles by women and minority mathematicians, and then writing papers on the mathematics.
  • Learn how to research various sources including books, the web, MathSciNet, the library, and reference lists in order to find information on women and minority mathematicians, their mathematics and multicultural and gender issues in mathematics.
  • Be exposed to the historical progression of mathematics, including the mathematics of living mathematicians.
  • Develop the ability to summarize and critically evaluate sources and materials.
  • Develop the ability to focus on a reasonable mathematical aspect to carefully research, write up and speak on.
  • Develop communication skills by communicating life and work summaries, and mathematics research to a general audience in writing, in class presentations, and (for the final project) in a web page format.
  • Explore how to incorporate mathematics into school classrooms.

    Grades

  • Participation in Classroom Activities 20%
    This class does not follow the standard lecture format. There will be days when the activities are designed to be completed during class. Thus, attendance is required at ALL classes. Missing more than 3 classes (official and/or unofficial absences) will result in a lower participation grade. Missing more than 5 classes will result in a grade of F. An incomplete will be granted only in university justified cases. Save your absences for emergencies. You are expected to contribute to discussions and may be called on to participate.
  • WebCT Tests 15% The first try will occur in the lab and will be worth 20% of the WebCT grade for that test. No make-ups are allowed, but the lowest score will be dropped. Each test will have up to 5 additional tries to achieve a perfect score on the test retake, and the highest of this score will be worth 80% of the WebCT grade for that test. You should view these tests primarily as a chance to reinforce learning, as reflected in the generous grading policy. This means that these tests are not only an opportunity for you to demonstrade your mastery of the material, but are also an opportunity for you to be challenged with new material in order for you to make new connections. May occur the last week of classes.
  • Paper 1 15%
  • Paper 2 15%
  • Paper 3 15%
  • Final Web Project 20% Wednesday 5/9 9-11am - last day of finals No Makeups allowed.

    Policies

    Material is covered very quickly. Plan to spend at least 7-10 hours per week, out of class, on this course. Attendance and participation are expected and required. Please try to be punctual in attending, as I try to start each class on time. If you must be late to a class, or must leave early, then do still attend, although you can expect that the portion of the class that you miss will be deducted from your attendance allowance. You are responsible for all material covered and all announcements and assignments made at each class, whether you are present or not. You are also responsible for announcements made on the web pages, so check them often.

    As mandated for writing designated courses, you will be assigned a significant amount of writing. Use the time before the paper is due to explore the mathematical ideas deeply, to bring rough drafts or ideas into office hours and to ensure that your writing satisfies the writing checklist. Revisions will be allowed in response to comments that I have made on a draft. Respond to the comments-use them as invitations to clarify your understanding of ideas or my understanding of your writing. You cannot turn in revisions unless you have turned in work when it was originally due and you must resubmit the original paper along with the revision. You can expect to have your graded papers returned to you one week after you submit them. Over the course of the semester, at least one of your papers must be on a woman mathematician, and at least one of your papers must be on a minority mathematician (as defined in class). If you choose to have partners for the papers, and choose to divide up the work, you must be the one to write up the mathematics content in at least two of the papers (including the final web project).

    Certain homework or assignments will require use of a computer with web access. Either you will be given some time in lab to do the assignment, or you will have at least 36 hours to complete such an assignment - enough time to access a computer from school if you do not have one at home. If, due to work or other responsibilities, you cannot access a computer with web access at least once every 36 hours, then you should drop out of this course.

    When writing up work, be sure to give acknowledgment where it is due. Submitting someone else's work as your own (PLAGIARISM) is a serious violation of the University's Academic Integrity Code.

    Methodology

    Asking questions, and explaining things to others, in or out of class, is one of the best ways to improve your understanding of the material. This course is to be an environment in which everyone feels comfortable asking questions, making mistakes and offering good guesses and ideas, and is respectful to one another. .

    In this course, you will be challenged with problems that you have never seen before. I do not expect you to be able to solve all the issues immediately. Instead, I want to see what you can do on your own. Out in the real world, this is important, since no matter what job you have, you will be expected to seek out information and answers to new topics you have not seen before. This may feel uncomfortable and frustrating. I understand this and want to help you through the process. It helps to remember that there are no mathematical dead-ends! Each time we get stuck, it teaches us something about the problem we are working on, and leads us to a deeper understanding of the mathematics.

    In the real world though, you are not expected to face your work alone. You will be allowed to talk to other people and you may even be expected to work with other people. In this class, you are also not expected to face your work alone. I encourage you to talk to me often in class and office hours, and group work will also be encouraged.

    I am always happy to help you in class, during office hours (or by appointment), or on e-mail, and will try to give you hints and direction. At times though, to encourage the exploration process, I may direct you to rethink a problem and to come back to discuss it with me again afterwards. This occurs when I believe that the struggle to understand is imperative for your deep understanding of the material.