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Syllabus for Math 147, Fall 1999

Randall Holmes

M. Randall Holmes

Peculiarities of Schedule:
We meet Thursday, Friday, and alternate Wednesdays, starting on Aug. 25th. I list the dates on which we actually meet below.

Office and Hours:
Office: Math/Geology 240A. Hours: To be determined after consulting you all.

My office telephone number is 3011 (426-3011 from off-campus). My home telephone number is 345-2899: students are welcome to call me but please no calls after 8:30 pm any day or between 6 pm Friday and noon Sunday.

Electronic Information:

WWW (web page):
I read my e-mail constantly and respond promptly.

An electronic version of the syllabus, which will include homework assignments, will be accessible from my web page.

Stewart, Redlin, and Watson, Precalculus. This is the same book we used last semester.

The class will meet on the following Wednesdays (barring disaster so far undetected by me): Aug. 25th; Sept. 8, 22; Oct 6, 20; Nov. 3, 17; Dec 1.

The add deadline (and deadline for dropping without a W) is Sept. 3.

The drop deadline is Oct. 1; please note that this is before the tentative date for the second in-class exam. Petitions to drop classes after this date are usually unsuccessful.

Tentative dates for in-class exams (no promises here!): Sept. 16, Oct. 8, Nov. 4, and Dec. 3.

The final exam will be either Monday, December 13, 8-10 am or Wednesday, December 15, 8-10 am, depending on coordination with the other class that uses this room.

If you read the class schedule, you will see that a graphing calculator is required for this course. We will use graphing calculators, but their use will not be permitted on some exams; thus, you must also have a scientific calculator without graphing or symbolic computation functions before the date of the first test. You have been warned!

Homework will usually be assigned daily, and will be due two class sessions after it is assigned (allowing one intervening class session for discussion; homework assigned on one of the two days before an exam will be due three sessions later to make discussion possible). I will hand out sheets with several days' homework assignments on them in advance; it is your responsibility to keep track of the days on which individual assignments are actually due.

I will grade from 3 to 5 selected problems from each assignment (I will not tell you which ones). Each assignment is worth 100 points; 30 of these are given ``free'' for handing in the assignment; the percentage of the remaining 70 points given depends on your performance on the selected problems.

I disavow any consistent policy whatever on late assignments; I may at my own discretion grade and return them as usual, return them graded with a penalty, or return them completely unread. In the last case, your grade on the assignment will be 30.

A new feature this semester will be the assignment of challenge problems. These will be assigned to pairs of students; each pair will get two to four problems during the semester, depending on how this works out. Students will receive credit based on their effort/participation and on their actual success in solving the problems.

How Your Course Grade Will Be Computed:
I expect to give four in-class exams this term. You will have the full period to work on an exam. There will not be review days for exams, except the final, though I will be willing to take questions about exams during the usual time for homework discussion (within reason).

Exams will generally be linearly scaled so that the median grade in the class corresponds to a mid-range C (75 percent) unless I am seriously dissatisfied with overall class performance.

Each exam is worth 100 points. The total homework grade counts as an exam (100 points). The final counts 200 points; your percentage grade on the final may replace the lowest of the other five grades (in-class exams and homework) if this helps you.

90 or above is an A; 80 or above is a B; 70 or above is a C; 60 or above is a D; lower grades are F (after any scaling).

Eligibility for this Class:
No exceptions will be made. If the computer tells me that you don't meet prerequisite or placement exam standards for this course, I will free your seat for someone who does meet them.

Attendance will not be taken except on the first two days. If you do not attend this class on one of the first two days, I will exercise my option to have you administratively withdrawn.

Waiting List?:
If this class is full, you wait for an opening entirely at your own risk. I will not normally admit anyone over the official class capacity.

Use of Maple?:
I'm not planning to take students into the computer lab this term. Students who are planning to go on to calculus and who would like to find out more about the Maple computer package used in our calculus sequence may try talking to me privately later.

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Next: Generic Syllabus
Randall Holmes