Your main efforts in this class will center around 4 problem sets (see the course calendar for due dates). The rules for these are given on the cover sheet of the problem set, and is available from the assignments web page. Problem sets are to be worked independently; that means you should not discuss them outside of class except with the course instructor. See the collaboration policy for details.
Problem sets will be assigned every other Friday, and will be collected on the following Friday. You should begin work on them as soon as possible, as many problems will require that you think about them more than once. Starting on a problem set does not mean just beginning the first problem or two and leaving the rest for later; you should get in the habit of reading through all the problems, and working on them a little bit each day. The harder problems frequently come at the end, so it is not in your best intrest to leave these until the night before they are due. One of the reasons for giving you a week to work on the problems is so you can ask questions about them during class; be sure to take advantage of this by starting on all the problems early.
You should use the following guidelines for the problem sets that you turn in:
- Please staple your pages together, and trim the left edge if they are torn out of a spiral notebook. Unstapled or ragged pages will not be graded.
- Your solutions are due at the beginning of class on the day they are due. Late papers will not be graded.
- Please print on only one side of the paper, clearly and legibly.
- Please leave some space in the margins or between problems for my comments. Begin each problem on a new page, unless both fit comfortably and completey on the same page.
- Do not use graph paper except for graphs. Use lined paper for written work.
- Read the instructions on the cover sheet carefully for each problem set. They are not always the same.
Since this course deals extensively with the style and technique of writing mathematics, you should be especially careful to write clearly and carefully on the work you turn in. That means you should write in complete, English sentences when you write up your homework. Mathematical notation is shorthand for English words, so you can incorporate these into your sentences, but they should read as a sentence, and you must explain what you are doing as you do it. I will give you examples of this as we go.
Copies of the best solutions will be made available in a notebook outside my office, as will any solution that I write up myself. If I circle a problem number in red on an assignment that you turn in, that means I have made a copy of your answer and placed it in this notebook (this is just for your information). See the discussion of the course notebook for more information.
See the discussion of the grading policy for the percentage of your grade that will come from your problem sets.