Stony Brook Mathematics Department

MAT 200
Logic, Language, and Proof
Spring 2005
* Index
* Announcement
* Syllabus and Schedule
* Homework


The basic goal of MAT 200 is to introduce students to mathematical reasoning and proofs. The course starts with description of logical language, operations, and rules, and their use in mathematical proofs. Then we will illustarte this using Euclidean geometry as the model. The emphasis in this part of the course will be on the interplay among geometric figures and reasoning, formal logic and language. Finally, we give an accurate description of the tools used in most of mathematics: sets and maps between them.

Course Information

Meetings: The class meets Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3:50-5:10 PM in Light Engineering 152.

Prerequisites: The prerequisites for this course are:

    C or higher in MAT 203 or 205 or AMS 261 and in MAT 211 or AMS 210
    or A- or higher in MAT 125 or 131 or 141 or AMS 151
    or B- or higher average in MAT 125/126/127 or MAT 131/132 or or MAT 141/142 or AMS 151/152
    or permission of instructor.

Staff: Instructor: Anthony Phillips, Math Tower 3-113, (2-8259, 2-6958)
   Office Hours: Mon 1-3 PM starting 1/31.
   Best method for contact is email:
Grader: Pedro Solorzano, Math Tower 4-122.
  Office Hours: Mon, Wed 3-5 PM in 4-122; Mon 5-7 PM in the Math Learning Center (S-135A).

Text: Proof, Logic, and Conjecture: The Mathematician's Toolbox, by Robert S. Wolf. Freeman, 1998. In addition, we will also be using Geometry notes written for this course by Stony Brook faculty.

Examinations: There will be two in-class midterms (March 1 and April 5) and a final examination (May 12, 5-7:30 PM).

Grades: The final course grades will be determined as follows: homework 15%, midterms 25% each, final exam 35%. Incompletes will be granted only if documented circumstances beyond your control prevent you from taking the final examination.

Group work: We encourage you to form teams of three or four students and to work together. We will try to do as many group exercises as possible in class, to get you used to this type of work. Several people thinking together about a problem can often see around a difficulty where one person might get stuck. This is one reason why the ability to work well in a team is rated very highly by prospective employers.

Homework: Homework is a means to an end, the ``end'' being for you to learn the material. We encourage you to work on homework together with friends. In this course, we will never prosecute anyone for academic dishonesty on any issue relating to homework. If you hand in complete, correct solutions, you will get full credit for them, no matter how you obtained them. If someone regularly ``does'' the homework by copying from friends or from solution manuals, they are only cheating themselves, since this is not a way to learn the material.

The lowest two homework scores will not be counted in computing the homework grade.

Never be shy to ask us how to do a homework problem, even if you handed in a copied solution that you do not understand. We will be glad to help you!

General Advice: In order to understand the lectures, it is essential that, before you come to class, you review the material covered in the previous class. This will greatly increase your understanding.
Please remember that mathematics is cumulative, so don't fall behind! If you are behind, you will find new material presented in lectures much more difficult to follow, and you will be forced to try to learn that new material on your own. This will cost you a lot of extra time. If you feel you are slipping behind, consult your recitation instructor or your lecturer immediately: get help right away!

Complaints: If you have any complaints about the course, please contact your instructor first. If this does not resolve the matter, please see the Math Undergraduate Program Director (2-8250), and then the Math Dept Chair (2-8290).

Special Needs: If you have a physical, psychological, medical or learning disability that may impact on your ability to carry out assigned course work, I would urge that you contact the staff in the Disabled Student Services office (DSS), Room 133 Humanities, 632-6748/TDD. DSS will review your concerns and determine, with you, what accommodations are necessary and appropriate. All information and documentation of disability is confidential.

Anthony Phillips
Math Dept SUNY Stony Brook
January 20, 2005