Math 597A, Spring 2012


Course Title: Graduate Student Seminar

Instructor: Nigel Higson

Meeting Times: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10:10 to 11:00 in 109 Osmond.

Office Hours:  By appointment (speak with me before or after class to fix a time).

Overview:  The point of the seminar is to give you practice writing about and speaking about mathematics, while at the same time showing you important topics in mathematics that you might not meet in your regular courses.  

Course Work:  You’ll be asked to give two presentations during the semester and to submit short written accounts of your lectures (to me, in TeX).  Further details about these assignments can be found here.  You’ll also be asked to submit to me by email comments on each of your fellow students’ talks.  I’ll summarize these and pass them on to the speakers in the form of anonymous feedback.  Again, more details will be provided soon.

Assessment:  You will be assessed on basis of your performance on the class assignments, especially on the effectiveness of your presentations.

Deadlines:  There are many students in the class and many presentations to schedule. So it is extremely important that you meet all deadlines concerning submission of topics, selection of presentation dates, submission of feedback, and so on. 

Schedule:  Available here.

Attendance:  You should attend all class meetings.

Textbook:  There is no textbook.

Exams:  There will be no exams.

Academic Integrity: Students must meet University and the College standards of academic integrity. The University defines academic integrity as "the pursuit of scholarly activity in an open, honest, and responsible manner." It goes on to say that "academic integrity includes a commitment not to engage in or tolerate acts of falsification, misrepresentation or deception. Such acts of dishonesty violate the fundamental ethical principles of the University community and compromise the worth of work completed by others."  See this page.  For a more compelling account of what honesty and integrity should mean, at least for a scientist (or a mathematician), consider these famous words of Richard Feynman.

Nigel Higson - 2010