General Information
and Course Policies

The Text. John B. Fraleigh A First Course in Abstract Algebra, Sixth Edition, Addison Wesley Longman, 1998
Daily Homework. Homework assignments will typically include a mixture of computation and proof-writing. Computations will serve to develop problem-solving ability while providing the motivation and intuition necessary to understand the theory of the course. Proof writing will serve to develop the presentation skills necessary to communicate rigorous mathematical ideas to others. Keep in mind that you are not done with a proof after you figure out the correct line of attack. The presentation of your proof is equally important.


  1. Homework is due at the START of class on the assigned due date, unless I specify otherwise. Late homework will not be accepted. If you know you will be missing class for some reason (e.g., an athletic event), turn in your assignment BEFORE you leave. Under extenuating circumstances extensions may be granted, but this should be discussed with me in advance.
  2. Your homework will be evaluated on neatness, completeness, and correctness.
  3. Group work is encouraged, but assignments must be written up INDIVIDUALLY unless specified otherwise. Copied work is considered to be an academic infraction even if the work was discussed in collaboration with a classmate before write-up (see Academic Honesty below).
Academic Honesty. In general, the rules set forth in the 2001-2002 Course of Study (pp. 27-30) applies. In general any work submitted for credit must result directly from your own understanding, thoughts, and ideas. Presenting the work of others as your own is strictly prohibited. In the case of homework you may collaborate with others in discussing how a problem may be solved, but
the final submitted solution should be worked independently. Assistance must not be given nor received (other than the instructor) on any quiz, or exam associated with this course, except where explicitly allowed by the instructor. In the case of group assignments, full collaboration on all aspects is required of group members. Each member of a group will be held equally responsible for work

You should feel free to discuss assignments and course objectives with others and work collaboratively on suggested problems and any additional problems you decide to work. A lot may be learned through the interaction of colleagues. On the other hand anything submitted for credit, by you as an individual or by your group, must represent your own ideas and understanding, expressed in your own word and symbols without verbatim copying of others unless due credit is given.
Daily Reading. Reading the textbook before each lesson is a necessity. Come to class prepared with questions and comments for discussion. There will not be enough time to cover all aspects of each topic during class. You will still be held responsible for the material.
Projects. On occasion, we will be using the software package GAP (Groups, Algorithms, and Programming). GAP is a freely distributed program designed to handle large computations within and relating to groups. See GAP projects for more information on this.

Exams. There will be 2 hourly exams and a final exam. Each of the 2 hourly exams will have a take-home component as well as an in-class component. The take-home component will be worth twice as much as the in-class portion of the exam (100pts and 50pts respectively), and you will choose a 48-hour period over which to work on the take-home.

Exam I..........................................................Friday, Feb. 15
(The take-home portion will be distributed on Fri., Feb. 15 and due Wed., Feb. 20)
Exam II........................................................Friday, Apr. 5
(The take-home portion will be distributed on Fri. Apr. 5 and due Wed., Apr. 10)
Final Exam..................................................Take-Home
(The final exam will be distributed on Fri., May 3 and will be due at 11:30AM on Wednesday, May 8. This date/time was chosen to agree with the scheduled exam period defined by the college.)

Grades. Your grade will be based on the daily homework, presentations & participation, projects, 2 exams, and the final exam. Each will be weighted as follows.

% of Total

Daily Homework (Written Presentations)


Projects & Participation (including Oral Presentations)


2 Exams (15% each)


Final Exam




Learning Disabilities. If you have a disability which requires an accommodation in this class, please feel free to discuss your concerns with me, but you should also consult Ms. Erin Salva, (Coordinator of Disability Services; Office of the Dean for Academic Advising, PBX 5453) as soon as possible. Ms. Salva (in consultation with the L.E.A.R.N. committee) has the authority and the expertise to decide on the accommodations that are proper for your disability. Though I am happy to help you in any way I can, I cannot make any accommodations for learning (or other) disabilities without proper authorization from Ms. Salva.

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