Class hours: TR 7:00-8:15 pm, Rm
656, CU-Denver Bldg.
Prerequisite: Permission of the Instructor
Textbook: None required
Course Web Page:
Overview: The Mathematics Clinic is
a 3-credit course intended to give students
practical experience applying mathematics to solve real-world
problems. The clinic is conducted as a research team, with the
students and faculty working together to address a problem of interest
to a sponsoring corporation or government agency. Students should
have a strong mathematical background, but need not be mathematics
Gain experience applying mathematics to
Improve oral and written communication skills.
Develop teamwork and project management skills.
Gain experience in interdisciplinary collaboration.
Produce a high quality piece of work that will help
enhance your marketability to prospective employers.
Conduct of Course
The course will be run as much as
possible like a real-world project. Don't expect many lectures. Most
of our class time will be spent working on the project. Our goal
is to develop a body of
work that will satisfy our sponsor. Because each
project is different, it is impossible to
anticipate exactly what you will be doing, but here is a broad outline
of how I expect the course to run.
Project Definition (2-3
weeks). During this phase, we will be learning about the
problem, brainstorming ideas, exploring the literature, and defining
goals for the semester. Typical assignments in this phase include
literature review, developing an annotated bibliography, and
giving a short oral presentation to the class about a topic of
Project Planning (1-2
weeks). In this phase, we will break down the goals into
well-defined tasks, assign people to project teams to perform these
tasks, develop a project schedule, and create an outline for our final
report. Typical assignments in this phase include writing a project
plan, more reading, and presentations to the class.
Project Execution (7-10
weeks). Here, you will work on your assigned tasks (usually in
teams) to achieve the project goals. A major component of this
will be writing your parts of the project report. You might also
be developing mathematical models and/or computer
software. During this phase, you will be expected to submit a
bi-weekly status report. These reports will be assembled and
submitted to our sponsor.
Final Reporting and
Close-out (3 weeks). During this phase, we will assemble and edit
the final report, wrap up loose ends, edit the report, compare project
achievements, edit the report some more, develop and give a final
presentation for our
sponsor, edit the report, and celebrate!
Our primary means of communication between classes will be a web-based
discussion page (available at the course web site). Get in the habit of
checking the message board regularly (at least once between each class
meeting). You will be required to post status reports to the discussion
board, and you should also post ideas or questions or any information
that you believe might be helpful to others in the class.
grade will reflect how well you meet your responsbilities and your
overall contribution to the success of the project.
are several aspects of your performance that are particularly important
in this course:
Prepared attendance is
expected, so each student can
participate actively in the discussions. Unlike conventional courses,
the whole class depends upon each student's contribution.
Timeliness is crucial, as we must produce
final report on time. All assigments are milestones, scheduled to fit
this overall deadline. Accordingly, late assignments will
assessed substantial penalties.
If you are experiencing difficulties
that might cause you to miss a deadline, talk to me as soon as
possible. We may be able to adjust the deadline by making modifications
to the project plan.
Communcation skills (both oral and
written) are an
important part of your evaluation. One of the educational goals of the
clinic is that you improve these skills, and this is reflected in your
usual courses, you cannot be successful just by "doing what you're
told". I will try my best to make sure everyone has meaningful
and doable assignments that will contribute to the overall project; but
it is ultimately your responsibility to you to find your niche.
You need to think be proactive, by thinking up ideas,
volunteering for tasks, and assuming a leadership role. If
you think your work load is too light or your assignments are
irrelevant or not meaningful, come talk to me so we can get you back on
Teamwork. We're all
in this together. At times, it can be very frustrating
working together. But it is critical that you work hard to make
your team successful.
Due to the dynamic nature of the
project, it is impossible to predict all of your assignments, but
typically, grading will be based according to the following weights:
5%....Annotated Bibliography 5%....Project Proposal 5%....Biweekly Status Reports 20%...Project presentations 20%...Participation/contributions 10%...Draft Report 35%...Final Report (team--Due May 8)
These weights may be adjusted to reflect additional task or individual
Each of you will be responsible
for reviewing a portion of the literature relevant to our problem. You
should find several (3-5) references (journal papers, technical
reports, or book chapters), which you will then summarize in an
annotated bibliography. You may also find relevant references
the lay (or semi-technical) literature, in which case you will need
to annotate more references (count 3 lay papers as one article from
a substantive journal). You
must create your bibliography using
BibTeX facility of LaTeX, and submit your "bib" file electronically.
You do not have to read your
references in detail. Simple skimming is
generally sufficient at the early stages. The goal is to be able to
summarize what is contained in the reference so that others in the
class can determine whether the article is relevant to their work.
This is a formal document, written
in LaTeX, that defines your team and describes what you propose to do
for your term project. There are two parts: technical description, and
project management. Both are essential.
The technical description
describes in as much detail as possible
what issues you plan to address and what avenues you intend to
explore in addressing those issues. This section should include
to relevant literature and should include a proposed outline for your
contribution to the final report.
The management description
describes how your team will function,
how often it will meet, and who will be responsible for each part of
project. It should also include milestones and dates for key parts
of your project.
During finals week, the
class will give a formal presentation of the clinic results to our
sponsor. In preparation, each team will give a
practice talk toward the end of the semester. After your practice
talk, the class (as well as the instructor) will critique your
presentation to suggest ways to improve it. You will be graded on
both your practice talk and the final presentation. See Tips
for Oral Presentations for further
Several weeks before the end of the semester,
each team will submit a draft report. This should be as close to a
report as possible. I will give you feedback on changes that are
needed. You are also welcome to submit earlier drafts if you
would like earlier feedback.
Final Report: At
the end of the semester, each team will
submit a final report. Your report will be included in a total clinic
report, which will be bound. This will be distributed to the class,
the library and others. Your English must be correct and polished.
Formats must be formal, and the report must be done in LaTeX. See
for Final Report for more details.
In addition to all of the above, you will
be expected to contribute to the overall class effort to satisfy our
customer. There are a number of ways you can strengthen your
In class participation. Come to class
prepared and contribute to the
Participation in the online discussion. Make a habit of
to the clinic discussion page at least once a week. Read the messages
posted by other students, and reply where appropriate.
Throughout the semester, we will identify topics that
to be explored as background material for the class. When this happens
some of you will be asked to prepare and present some information about
the topic. Each of you should expect to present at least one such topic
benefit of the rest of the class.
Keep in contact with me outside of class. I encourage
you to meet with me regularly to discuss your progress on the clinic
NOTE: Part of your
participation score will include peer evaluation from your team members.
During the execution phase of the project, each team must
submit a brief (1 or 2 paragraph) status report (to the course
discussion page) every
other week (excluding spring break). Your status report should state
1) what has been accomplished since the last status report, and
2) what your goals are for the next reporting period.
Anticipated Deadlines(indicated by *) and Important Dates
First day of class
Annotated bibliography due
Project Proposal due
Submit Status Report
Submit Status Report
Last day to drop without dean's approval
Submit Status Report
Draft report due
Final Presentation to Raytheon
Sat., May* 6
Final Report due
Spring 2006 Registration
Deadlines and Responsibilities for CLAS Students
Students are responsible for completing financial arrangements with financial aid, family, scholarships
INCOMPLETE GRADES (IW/IF): Incomplete grades (IW or IF) are not granted for low academic performance. To be eligible for an Incomplete grade, students must (1) successfully complete 75 percent of the course, (2) have special circumstances (verification may be required) that preclude the student from attending class and completing graded assignments, and (3) make arrangements to complete missing assignments with the original instructor. A CLAS Course Completion agreement is strongly suggested.
12 January ()Payment plan
deadline for students registering by 16 December 2005.Students
not on financial aid are
administratively disenrolled for non-payment. 19 JanuaryLast
day to be
added to the wait-list for a
closed course. 17January
– 27 JanuaryStudents are
verifying an accurate Spring 2006 registration via SMART. 26
day to add courses via the web SMART system. 1
()Last day to
add 16-week structured courses.Treated
as an absolute deadline.The
1 Feb deadline does not apply to
independent study, internships, and late-starting modular courses. 1
February ()Last day to drop a Spring 2006 course for
tuition refund and no transcript notation<> 1
February (5:00 pm) Last day for
undergraduates and graduates to
apply for May, 2006 graduation.
10 February (5:00 pm)Last
day for CLAS
students to add a Spring 2006 course.Treated
as an absolute
AprilLast day to drop a
Spring 2005 course
without college approval.
14 AprilLast day to
drop a Spring 2005 course for
CLAS students.Treated as an absolute
1 May Last day to
withdraw (drop all courses) without a written petition.
Academic Calendar for details on