# Math 304

## Permutation Puzzles: A Mathematical Perspective

## Welcome

This is the course webpage for Math304, Department of Mathematics, Simon Fraser University. Spring 2021.

Lectures: | ||
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MWF | TBA | Online |

Tutorials: | ||

Tuesday | TBA | Online |

Tuesday | TBA | Online |

## Instructors

Dr. Jamie Mulholland | |
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email: | j_mulholland@sfu.ca |

office: | SC K10541 |

office hrs: |
MWF 11:30-12:30 or by appointment |

Teaching Assistant - TBA | |
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## About This Course

In this course we will investigate Rubik's cube, the 15-puzzle, TopSpin, and other permutation puzzles. Our goal is to understand theses from a mathematical viewpoint; we will come up with solvability criteria (i.e. the ability to look at a mixed up puzzle and know if it is solvable or if someone is playing a trick on you and reassembled the puzzle in such a way that it cannot be solved), and we will investigate solution strategies.

This course is particularly suited for students doing a minor's degree in Mathematics.

Math majors are encouraged to take Math341: Algebra III Group Theory instead of Math301.

### What Will You Learn In This Course?

A list of course level learning outcomes is available in the course outline.

### Course Content - The Big Picture:

### Prerequisites:

Integral Calculus (Math 152 or 155 or 158) and Linear Algebra (Math 232 or 240). Previous computing experience is not required, but can be helpful if you have it.

### Grading Scheme:

Assignments | 30% |

Midterm 1 | 25% |

Midterm 2 | 25% |

Final/Poster | 20% |

### Important Dates:

Midterm 1 | Wednesday October 9, 2019 |

Midterm 2 | Friday November 15, 2019 |

Final/Poster (info) | December 10 or 11, 8:30-11:30am |