Math 60, Honors Probability

Peter Doyle

Spring 2012

Quick links


Due dates of assignments and projects; exam dates.


Announcements of readings and written assignments, exams, office hours, etc.:

Matlab programs

Programs to accompany the text, and other sample programs:


Peter Doyle, 331 Kemeny Hall. Instead of office hours I'll be scheduling help sessions. Blitz me any time to ask a question or set up a meeting.

Class meetings

The class meets in the 10A slot, TuTh 10:00-11:50. We will be using the X-hour, W 3:00-3:50. Keep this time open!

When you will not able to attend class, I would appreciate it if you would send me email in advance.


The course textbook is Grinstead and Snell's `Introduction to Probability, 2nd. revised edition', which should be available at Wheelock Books. It is also available for free download from the web, but I guarantee you will want to buy a hard copy. This is a really great book, and cheap compared to most math textbooks.

Components of the course

The major components of the course are assignments; quizzes and short exams; and two projects.


The specific assignments will be determined as we go along. Look here:

The course will closely follow the syllabus from Spring 2010:

We'll also be incorporating computer assignments using Matlab. For information on how to install and get started with Matlab, see Alex Barnett's links for Math 46:

Assignments will be due at the beginning of class on specified due dates. Extensions will be granted in case of illness, and in case of other pressing conflicts provided you ask in advance. Late assignments will be accepted up to three days after the due date. They will be marked off 20% for each day late, including the day the assignment was due.

Quizzes and exams

The aim of the quizzes and exams will be to make sure you have mastered basic material and techniques. The main focus of the course will be the assignments and projects.


The two projects will give you a chance to do an investigation on your own. Projects need not involve a Matlab component, though I expect most projects will have one. The first project will be due, in both printed and electronic form, at the end of the seventh week of the term (Thursday 10 May). The second project will be due on the last day of classes (Thursday 31 May), when students will present their projects in a poster session. The second project may be either an extension of the first project, or an entirely new project. You may work together in pairs on these projects if you choose.


Grades will be subjective, based on my assessment of what students have put into and gotten out of the course. As a starting point, I will compute an average of scaled scores on assignments, quizzes and exams, and projects.

Honor Code

Students are encouraged to work together to do homework problems. What is important is a student's eventual understanding of homework problems, and not how that is achieved. The honor principle applies to homework in the following way. What a student turns in as a written homework solution is to be his or her own understanding of how to do the problem. Students must state what sources they have consulted, with whom they have collaborated, and from whom they have received help. Students are discouraged from using solutions to problems that may be posted on the web, and as just stated, must reference them if they use them. The solutions you submit must be written by you alone. Any copying (electronic or otherwise) of another person's solutions, in whole or in part, is a violation of the Honor Code.

On projects, no copying of text, computer code, or graphics will be permitted without prior written permission from me.

If you have any questions as to whether some action would be acceptable under the Academic Honor Code, please speak to me, and I will be glad to help clarify things. It is always easier to ask beforehand than to have trouble later!


I encourage any students with disabilities, including "invisible" disabilities such as chronic diseases and learning disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with me, which might help you with this class, either after class or during office hours. Dartmouth College has an active program to help students with disabilities, and I am happy to do whatever I can to help out, as appropriate.


Peter G. Doyle 2012-03-28