MATH 645 A Survey of Mathematical Problems I
Fall 2015

Professor: Dr. Sue Geller
Office: 219B Blocker (BLOC on the map)
Office Hours: Make an appointment at /undergraduate/advising/
Phone: 979-845-7531
Fax: 979-862-4190

Welcome to the home page for Math 645 A Survey of Mathematical Problems I for the Fall of 2015.

This course will consist of reading assignments, problem assignments, and a term paper. You may find yourself challenged in new ways by the assignments because some of the problems are difficult. If using other sources, please give references. In particular, you may not simply copy solutions found on the web or from others even with minor editing. No credit will be given for copied solutions even with citation.

Information Needed from you immediately

This term we will be using Piazza for class discussion. I will put up your email to start the enrollment process once you email me the required information. The piazza system is highly catered to getting you help fast and efficiently from classmates and myself. Rather than emailing questions to me, I encourage you to post your questions on Piazza. If you have any problems or feedback for the developers, email Find our class page at:


There will be three main sources for this course, only one of which you need to buy. The collection of readings needs to be bought from Copy Corner, 2307 Texas Avenue South, College Station, TX 77840; phone 979-693-0640 and email . For those who are distance students, they will send you a copy by snail mail or an electronic copy or an electonically downloadable copy. Vicki Ward,, is the person overseeing the "book" for this course.

The rest of the materials will be available in .pdf form from this website. Student's Guide - pdf format. The third source is essays which I wrote to expand upon the text, since the text was written for a local class. Thus I wish to give information that would typically be given in class. To access the lectures, click here.


Term Paper

  • There are at least 24 students in the class this fall. Since there are 13 paradoxes listed, not including Banach-Tarski, at most two students may write on each paradox, so pick one and have it approved by me. First come, first served.
  • Acceptible paradoxes with some description of them may be found in chapter 13 of the course book (not the readings). A list of them along with who has taken them can be found here. Feel free to suggest others, but they must be approved.
  • Due Dates:

  • The topic must be chosen by you and approved by me by 3:00 PM CDT on 9 September.
  • The term paper is due by 1 pm CST on 10 December.


    Your final grade will be determined by your performance on the homework and term paper. The final grade will be determined counting the term paper as half the homework, i.e., the homework average times two for 200 points homework, 100 points term paper. The grading scheme is:

  • A: At least 270 points.
  • B: 240-269 points.
  • C: 210-239 points.
  • D: 180-209 points.
  • F: 0-179 points. I reserve the right to make the cutoffs lower, but promise they will not be higher.

    Late Work

    I realize that almost all of you are working and/or have families, so you have different constraints than students on campus. It is very helpful to me as well as useful for you to do each assignment on time. For example, I know from experience, as do many of you, that it is much harder to grade fairly when papers are graded at various times. Therefore, reasonable excuses will be accepted as long as the priviledge is not abused. When arranging for late work, be prepared to tell me when you will get the work to me.


  • If you want to discuss a problem by voice (i.e., phone), please give me some times when you will be available, and I try to call you then. Otherwise you may call me at work at any time.

  • All email correspondence must contain the course number in the subject heading so that I can easily distinguish it from spam and other types of correspondence.

  • Cheating and plagiarism will not be tolerated.

    Simply changing some words from a passage is still plagiarism unless you reference the source. There is an old quip "Stealing from one source is plagiarism, from many research." As with most quips, it is both true and false. To be true research there needs to be something from yourself in the essay/answer. The truth in the quip is that research is built on the results of many before us, but they need to be given the credit for their work for it to be morally, ethically, and legally correct. Also, simply copying an answer from someone is both cheating and plagiarism. Don't cheat nor plagiarize.

  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Policy Statement

    The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Department of Student Life, Services for Students with Disabilities, in Room 126 of the Koldus Building or call 845-1637.

  • Academic Integrity Statement

    "An Aggie does not lie, cheat, or steal or tolerate those who do." See the Honor Council Rules and Procedures for more information.


    Email Dr. Sue Geller
    Dr. Sue's Homepage
    Last update: 11 June 2015