Questions tagged [mathematical-analysis]

For questions applying to analysis courses: Real and complex analysis. Typically a higher and more proof-based level than calculus.

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26 votes
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Lesson plan to self-teach real analysis to student with comp-sci background

For my background, I'm a software engineer currently studying for his master's degree in information security. But when that's all done, I plan on going back to mathematics to keep me busy. But with ...
avgvstvs's user avatar
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39 votes
11 answers
3k views

Reasons for (not) distinguishing $f$ from $f(x)$

Formally, if $f$ is a function, $f(x)$ is a value. So for instance, $f$ can be continuous, but not $f(x)$. In teaching at school and university, notation is quite often mixed up, e.g. the function is ...
Anschewski's user avatar
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24 votes
10 answers
7k views

Why would you teach Calculus before teaching Real Analysis?

Let's assume our students are actual aspiring mathematicians. Why would we introduce our students to Calculus rather than Real Analysis? After all, "Calculus is a subset of Real Analysis". He will ...
ClassicEndingMusic's user avatar
20 votes
7 answers
2k views

How can I motivate the formal definition of continuity?

In order to teach continuity of real valued functions $f:D\to\mathbb R$ one may start with the (in some sense wrong) intuition $f$ is continuous when its graph can be drawn without lifting the pen. ...
Stephan Kulla's user avatar
30 votes
7 answers
2k views

Good definition for introducing real numbers?

In the first lectures about calculus/analysis, you should introduce real numbers. Let's assume students know that rational numbers are. What are the advantages or disadvantages in the different "...
Markus Klein's user avatar
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25 votes
8 answers
2k views

Counterintuitive consequences of standard definitions

Let me motivate my question with the following situation. While teaching the concept of continuity, I usually start with motivating the concept. Then, when we see that there is an important and ...
András Bátkai's user avatar
20 votes
5 answers
9k views

Best textbooks to introduce measure theory and Lebesgue integration?

What are the best textbooks to introduce measure theory and Lebesgue integration to undergraduate math majors? Many students in such a class will go on to graduate school and be required to take a ...
Gamma Function's user avatar
19 votes
2 answers
693 views

Comparison of different concepts of integral

As the following math stack exchange question (and answers) show: https://math.stackexchange.com/questions/703212/is-dxdy-really-a-multiplication-of-dx-and-dy There are a lot of different ways to ...
kjetil b halvorsen's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
634 views

Grade on proving |$a_1 +a_2+...+a_n| \le |a_1|+|a_2|+... +|a_n|$

In an Advanced Calculus course, students were asked to prove $$|a_1 +a_2+...+a_n| \le |a_1|+|a_2|+... +|a_n|$$ for $n$ real numbers $a_1,a_2,...a_n$ I am teaching assistant for this course, and one of ...
JAEMTO's user avatar
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32 votes
5 answers
3k views

The best way to introduce trigonometric functions in a rigorous analysis course

This is something I have always had issues with. Generally, three approaches are used: The geometric path: this follows the standard way how you would introduce these functions in school. The problem ...
András Bátkai's user avatar
30 votes
8 answers
2k views

Good motivation for the introduction of Lebesgue integral?

When students take a course on real analysis, they have likely learned about Riemann integrals. What is a good motivation why they have to learn a new way to integrate? A student don't want to hear ...
Markus Klein's user avatar
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28 votes
5 answers
3k views

What are some good examples to motivate the implicit function theorem?

I always had problems teaching the implicit function theorem in advanced analysis courses. This result is motivated by later applications, but it would be great to provide easily accessible examples ...
András Bátkai's user avatar
22 votes
16 answers
8k views

Why is it possible to teach real numbers before even rigorously defining them?

In mathematics, one can hardly study any mathematical concept unless it is clearly and rigorously defined. For example, without the definition the fundamental group, it is almost impossible to teach ...
Zuriel's user avatar
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21 votes
4 answers
1k views

Evaluating the reception of (epsilon, delta) definitions

Both education researchers and mathematicians discuss the challenge of (epsilon, delta) type definitions in real analysis and the student reception of them. My impression has been that mathematicians ...
Mikhail Katz's user avatar
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13 votes
2 answers
3k views

Introductory real analysis before or after introductory abstract algebra?

What are the pros and cons for students of taking introductory real analysis before or after introductory abstract algebra, assuming they are going to take both? I recognize that the overlap between ...
J W's user avatar
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12 votes
9 answers
12k views

Why do we study ordinary differential equations?

What is a good answer to the question: Why should one study ordinary differential equations? I would give the answer: ODEs are used in many models to determine how the state of this model is changing ...
Stephan Kulla's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

Interesting but very easy epsilon-delta problems?

I am teaching a real analysis class. Students in the class have inconsistent high school algebra skills. They now have a complete but tenuous understanding of $\varepsilon$-$\delta$ limits. I want to ...
benblumsmith's user avatar
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8 votes
3 answers
666 views

How to make students comfortable with the use of axiom of choice in analysis

I am teaching introductory real analysis this term and realize that my students have problem coming up with sequence in some arguments in real analysis. Let's take this example: Theorem: Given a ...
Arctic Char's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
679 views

What courses require multivariable analysis?

For which undergraduate and graduate mathematics courses is multivariable analysis* an essential prerequisite? $\text{*}$ That is, a rigorous follow up to a first real analysis course at the level of ...
user941's user avatar
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7 votes
4 answers
2k views

If I take Modern Analysis next year, will I be prepared to teach multivariable/vector calculus?

I’m currently getting my Master’s in Math at Portland State University so that I can teach community college mathematics. I’m specifically hoping to teach calculus, statistics, and linear algebra, so ...
blakedylanmusic's user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
1k views

Complex analysis (Applied versus pure)

I am studying Electrical Engineering and I want to specialize in signal processing. However, I have to study complex analysis first (I am an undergraduate, so I lack some terminology). In your opinion:...
Eng_Boody's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
409 views

A Plan for a Treatise Study of the Classical Theory of PDEs

The Plan In the study of any special issue in mathematics, two things may be of importance, namely, subjects and order of them. I just wrote down a plan to study the theory of partial differential ...
Hosein Rahnama's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

Why is continuity only defined on its domain?

As mentioned in this question students sometimes struggle with the fact that continuity is only defined at points of the function's domain. For example the function $f:\mathbb R\setminus\{0\} \to \...
Stephan Kulla's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why is continuity defined as a local property?

The formal definition of continuity is a local property (the definition of continuity at a point is a property of the germ of the function at this point). Why is it a good decision to make the ...
Stephan Kulla's user avatar
1 vote
4 answers
3k views

Prerequisites of mathematical analysis [closed]

What topics should I read before studying mathematical analysis? I want to have a solid foundation in terminology, notation and concepts in general. Please suggest titles for books.
Eng_Boody's user avatar
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-3 votes
3 answers
706 views

How can I convince my brightest student of Cantor's theory?

At the end of the mathematical high-school education I usually introduce the easiest facts of set theory: counbtability and Cantor's proof as the basis of modern mathematics. Now my brightest student ...
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