MA211: Foundations

Course website on Moodle


Scott R. Fulton (367 Science Center, 268-2379,, office hours)

Registration for Spring 2015:

MA211-Foundations is a required course for math, applied math, computer science, and software engineering majors (also computer science minors), so we need to reserve seats for them first. If at the end of the enrollment period there are seats left then you may register for the course.

However, if all you're looking for is a course to complete the math minor, there are other choices which may be better options. MA211 is basically a course in writing mathematical proofs, and as such requires you to do a lot of just that: writing proofs. LOTS of proofs. MA211 is a pre- or co-requisite for upper-division theoretical mathematics and computer science courses (such as MA311, MA313, MA314, MA321, MA322, and CS344, CS345, CS447, CS456) which require reading and writing mathematical proofs. Many students whose interest isn't in math (and proofs) find MA211 difficult.

Spring 2015 courses which might be better for a math minor (in rough order from "probably useful" to "maybe not such a good choice"):

Fall 2015 courses (tentative) which might be better for a math minor:

Textbook information for Spring 2015:

The textbook will be Discrete Mathematics: An Introduction to Mathematical Reasoning (brief edition) by Susanna S. Epp (Brooks/Cole, 2011, ISBN-10: 0-495-82617-0, ISBN-13: 978-0-495-82617-0). This is the same textbook as used in recent semesters at Clarkson, including Fall 2014. The publisher has provided this link to purchase or rent the textbook directly (this may or not be at a good price--you'll need to decide for yourself).

NOTE CAREFULLY: Be sure to get the Brief Edition--do NOT get the larger (and more expensive) text Discrete Mathematics with Applications.

ALSO NOTE: There seem to be some bogus copies of the textbook floating around which have some different exercises. I have not been able to pin the details down, but it appears they may be old electronic copies, perhaps of a preliminary edition. If you get one of these, it will not help you--there are too many differences in exercises. So be warned: if you get the book extra cheap (or free) you might not be getting the same thing.

There is also available a Student Solutions Manual and Study Guide (Brooks/Cole, ISBN-10: 0-495-82618-9, ISBN-13: 978-0-495-82618-7). This contains additional complete solutions, explanations, and review questions. It is not required, but you may find it helpful.

Spring 2015 Course Website:

Course website on Moodle

Other links:

Thu Jan 8 14:01:23 EST 2015
Scott R. Fulton