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For questions about discrete mathematical structures and applying to courses with the title "Discrete Mathematics" or equivalent. Since this tag is fairly broad, consider using a more specific tag if appropriate.

6
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2answers
184 views

Teaching logic through “high school algebra”?

I am going to be teaching a discrete math class in the fall. One of the major goals of the course is a solid understanding of the basics of logic: the precise meanings of "and", "or", "not", "implies"...
2
votes
3answers
122 views

Easy tool to draw stencils

I'm looking for a simple tool (preferably online or at least that works on Linux) to draw stencils. When teaching and creating notes for students, I often feel that it would make understanding in some ...
6
votes
0answers
79 views

Questions similar to Wason Selection Task

The Wason Selection Task (described by Pete Clark here) is a great problem for getting students to grapple with all of the intricacies of logical implication. I will be teaching a discrete ...
5
votes
1answer
119 views

Tutoring Discrete Mathematics

A few weeks ago, I started tutoring a student in Discrete Mathematics (a subject I took a year ago). I have previously tutored both pre-calculus and calculus, but never a proof based class. I have ...
2
votes
0answers
191 views

Introduction of the power set as a collection of *labels* or *names* for subsets

The way that naïve set theory is usually presented in undergraduate education is via very concrete examples of sets, often involving non-mathematical elements. When power sets are treated, having a ...
10
votes
4answers
535 views

Is Calculus Necessary?

That title is a quote from Fred Roberts: Fred Roberts. "Is Calculus Necessary?" Proceedings of the Fourth International Congress on Mathematical Education. 1980. p.52ff. "Calculus is not ...
5
votes
0answers
73 views

Solvability of Systems of Diophantine Equations using Modular Reasoning

I'll be teaching a U.S. college, freshman-level, pre-proofs discrete math course (for future teachers) this semester and one of the topics I like to cover is determining if a system of (usually linear)...
13
votes
3answers
517 views

Proofs that make theorems less clear

Teaching Theory of Computation for the first time, I encountered a phenomenon which perhaps is familiar to others in different contexts. I realize most MESE participants are not conversant with Th....
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Counterexamples to the Greedy Algorithm

In the graph theory section of my Discrete Math course I'll be covering Prim's Algorithm for finding the minimal spanning tree. I'd like to impress upon the students just how special it is that the ...
5
votes
5answers
230 views

Different approaches to proofs that “are the same”?

This question (and answers) on MSE got me thinking on simple examples of different ways of proving the same (hopefully somewhat interesting) result, as examples to be discussed on difference in ...
6
votes
4answers
146 views

Recommendations for free, basic resource on discrete probability for a discrete structures class?

I'm teaching a course this fall on Discrete Structures for Computer Science. It's taught out of the math department but is a service course for the CS department with 90-95% of students being CS ...
3
votes
0answers
123 views

Why is combinatorics not a part of the Tripos?

I do not officially study mathematics, so I always rely on what's on the internet. Specifically, I follow the schedules of the Tripos – the math program at Cambridge, supposedly one of the most ...
10
votes
3answers
214 views

Discrete Math text before a proof course

Our department has decided to offer a "Discrete Math" course that students would take before their "Intro to Proofs" course. The idea is that the Discrete Math course would focus on the computations ...
18
votes
2answers
564 views

Emphasizing the discrete in early undergraduate education?

From time to time, I have come across course ideas emphasizing the discrete over the continuous, such as Peter Saveliev's Fantasy Math curriculum (update: see also his draft book on discrete calculus) ...