Math 380A: Introduction to Discrete Mathematics

Professor Monty (William) McGovern; grader Tuomas Tajakka 
Spring 2018

Monty (or William) McGovern
Office: Padelford C-450; grader office PDL C-113
Phone: 206-543-1149
Office Hours: TTh 1:30 and by appointment; grader office hours TBA
Monday, Wednesday & Friday, 12:30 p.m-1:20 p.m., Denny Hall 112
Math 300 or the equivalent. 

1st Midterm: Friday, April 20, in class.
2nd Midterm: Friday, May 18, in class.
Final: Thursday, June 7, 8:30-10:20, in class.

Your grade will be based on weekly homework, two midterms, and a final, accounting for, respectively 20%, 40%, and 40% of the grade. In case you must miss a midterm, I would very much appreciate ADVANCE NOTICE so that other arrangements can be made to take it. Homework will be done in groups of 4, and will consist of problems presented in class as well as others that are written up. PLEASE TURN IN WHATEVER YOU CAN rather than nothing. In all tests you may use two letter-sized pages (one sheet front and back of notes in your own handwriting).
Incompletes and Drops:
The grade of Incomplete will be given ONLY if a student has been doing satisfactory work until the end of the quarter and then misses the final exam for a documented illness, religious reason, or family emergency.
What to Expect:
This class is modeled on a similar class at Dartmouth, and will use the method of guided discovery, supplemented by lectures in class. The textbook you will use consists mostly of problems, usually broken into smaller steps and sometimes with hints. By solving these problems you will discover for yourselves some of the main theorems of discrete mathematics and their proofs as well as learning some of their applications. The problems will be of two types: practice problems, that you work on in class and at home, but do not turn in, and written problems that you do turn in. All problems are taken from


Mar 30
practice problems #1,3,5,7,8,10; written problems #2,4,6,9,11 read 1.1,2
Apr 6
practice problems #15,19,20; written #16,17,18,24,25 read 1.2,3
Apr 13
practice problems #32,42,47 ; written #34,35,43,45,46 read 1.3.1-1.3.3
Apr 20
study problems, first midterm: 27,48,51,52,56,58 read 1.3.4, 2.1.1-2
Apr 27
49 [30 points], 68,76: read 2.2.1-2.3.3

May 4
May 11
3 board problems: compute the number of spanning trees of G-e and G/e where G is the complete graph on five vertices and e is an edge; show that S(n,k-1/S(n,k) for fixed n is an increasing function of k up to k=n; determine the lowest power of x in the chromatic polynomial chi(G) of a graph G.
May 18
study problems, second midterm: #89,93,100,103
May 25
3 board problems: show that any tree can be colored in just 2 ways using two colors: show that the number of partitions of n into parts that are not multiples of 3 equals the number of partitions of n for which each part occurs at most twice; find the generating function for the partitions of n into exactly k distinct parts
June 1
go over previous homework problems

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