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Book Reviews

Review of Algebra

Reviewed by H/V, from Vermont
This book was extremely repetitive but the words base is good.. It has a very easy step by step set up and is excellent for a self teaching device.

Review of Algebra

Reviewed by James Kim, from Cerritos, CA USA
The UCSMP Advanced Algebra, which I used during my 3-week preparation for the challenge test, is one nice algebra textbook. This is the same text that we use for Algebra II/Course III in our school, and although many people say that it's mostly a review of Algebra I (including my friend Lynn Zhang), I think this book still gives enough new ideas to anyone who has some good algebra skills but is not yet ready for the rigor of precalculus mathematics. This textbook helped me restore my lost confidence and interest in mathematics, and therefore I rate this book with 4 stars.

Reviewed by alexwcovington, from USA
An excellent text for self-learners and schools alike, this is great for anyone who wants to learn advanced algebra.

Reviewed by a reader, from Florida, USA
This was the worst maths book I ever had. All the stuff that we did I already had in Algebra I and therefore the whole year was a waste of time - of course not for those who are not good at maths. Our school competes at the regional maths competitions and all other schools were much better prepared than we were - well, the other schools didn't use UCSMP!

Reviewed by a reader, from Oregon, USA
I am a student and I took Algebra through a homeschool course. We tried many different books but this one was definently the best. I learned so much out of this book. But even more, I understood everything I learned. With every lesson taught there is a real life example that eliminates the constantly asked question... "And When in my life will I ever need to use this?"

Review of Algebra: The University of Chicago School Mathematics Project

Reviewed by a reader, from Michigan
The University of Chicago Math Series is excellent as an self-study or in-classroom math series. I prefer it over other curriculums I have used.

Reviewed by a reader, from Anacortes, WA
Our 14 yr. old (homeschooled) daughter just completed this University of Chicago's Algebra textbook. She found the text complete, thorough, and very easy to follow! She found it to be an almost completely 'self taught' course! She also enjoyed the colorful pictures, extra projects sections, and the interesting sidenotes which included world trivia topics. We have been successfully using the Saxon math text books for all of our lower grade math work thus far, and were somewhat reluctant to try something "new" and different. But right from the start, our daughter LOVED the Chicago math, and welcomed the change. I just wish that there had been a text like this for me, her mother, when I was struggling through Algebra back in the '70's. We would highly recommend this math textbook, and it's clear solution manual to ANYONE studying Algebra! Go ahead and try something different this year!

Review of Hcb - Algebra Volume I

Reviewed by a reader, from Ft. Wayne, IN United States
This book is ok but I think It needs more examples.

Review of A Teacher's Guide to Elementary Algebra

Reviewed by Jim Bennett, from Poughkeepsie, NY USA
I teach Algebra, and Jacobs's teacher's guide is my favorite, most frequently used resource. The guide gives the teacher a number of puzzles, tricks, visuals, jokes, etc. to introduce and reinforce concepts. It's explanations are right on target. It is written to be used in conjunction with the student text, but it could be used by itself for supplemental material for any curriculum. I think it's a shame that this valuable book is out of print. I give it a 5 star rating.

Review of Basic Algebra I

Reviewed by a reader, from Texas
I'm truly shocked that this book has received such low reviews. This is not an easy book, but it shouldn't be faulted for that. It's clear and beautifully written, and it's been a pleasure to work through. Additionally, the chapters are divided into sections that are 'bite size' with exercises at the end of each, which has made it well suited for regular daily study. I would highly recommend it to any student with some mathematical maturity who wishes to get a good foundation in the subject.

Reviewed by Remi, from London, England
This book and its sequel BAII form a superb algebra resource that I use constantly. While this book is neither a reference (in the sense of Bourbaki) nor a textbook (its style is far too elegant to be classified as a textbook), it is beautifully written and one can learn a great deal by reading it. A word of warning though: this book presupposes a fair amount of mathematical maturity, so I would not recommend this book as an introduction to abstract algebra. On the other hand, it is a great complement to algebra courses and its originality and the variety of topics covered make it an invaluable resource.

Reviewed by Farshid Arjomandi, from CA, USA
We used this book as a text for the first year graduate course on abstract algebra at UC Santa Cruz in the late 90's. I should say that this text is rigorous, but not the best choice geared for classroom use anymore... unless of course you like reading books in the style of those translated from Russian. I consider Jacabson's text one of the classics still worthy for reference purposes but not for use as a main source on an introductory graduate algebra course. However, I got the impression that most of my professors thought of this book as the bible because back in the day when they were in school (60's, 70's) they were taught off of it. Dr. Jacabson's book (unfortunately he passed away last year) needs rather serious updates to become appealing enough compared to the other sources that have hit the market in the past twenty years or so.

Reviewed by Todd Ebert, from Irvine Ca USA
I dislike the book for two main reason: 1)the author hides information in essay-style paragraphs which usually end in phrases like, "thus, we have proved...". If you are lucky, he will somewhere state the theorem.2) because of 1) it serves as a poor reference book, which is the main subsequent value of a text after you have taken the course with it.I do share some of the enthusiasm that Richard has for the book, but only for those parts of the book that I already understood from previous work. We actually took the class together at UC Santa Barbara. And from what I remember, Richard was one of the few students who had anything good to say about the book. I think a better graduate text is Hungerford's or Grove's ("Algebra").

Review of Basic Algebra II

Editorial review
First edition published in 1980. Textbook for undergraduate students addresses such topics as: categories, modules, classical representation theory of finite groups, formally real fields, etc. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.

Reviewed by Gene W. Smith, from San Jose
It is indeed not an undergraduate level book, but Jaconson I&IIform a great overall introduction to algebra for the budding algebraist. We used Jacobson I as the intro algebra text for graduate students at Berkeley, and it can be recommended forfirst or second year students (and beyond.) It forms a part of]the trilogy of "Don't Let the Name Fool You" of not that basicmathematics book with Weil's Basic Number Theory and Serre'sA Course in Arithmetic.

Reviewed by Timothy Y Chow, from Ann Arbor, Michigan
Basic Algebra II is much better organized than Basic Algebra I, and it is an outstanding reference for the algebra that every Ph.D. graduate student should know. Perhaps the decision to prove Wedderburn's theorem via Morita theory was unfortunate since it makes the former seem more inaccessible than it really is, but otherwise I cannot fault the exposition. One word of warning: if your main interest is algebraic number theory, then Lang's _Algebra_ is probably a better reference since Jacobson omits several topics that are crucial for the number theorist.

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