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Syllabus for Elementary Algebra

I try to check my e-mail at least once every day except holidays. Please include “Math 40” in the
subject field of your message. Messages without proper subjects are usually deleted without even opening.
When addressing the course-related questions, please explain to me what you did and state specific
questions that you have so I can help you learn the materials more proficiently. For example, instead of
asking “Can you show me how to do #3?” the student should present what he /she already did and ask for
correction.

Prerequisite: Completion of Math 23 or Math 25 with a grade of C or better

Contents: This course reviews introductory algebraic concepts, and includes the study of real numbers, the
solutions and applications of linear equations and inequalities as well as systems of linear equations, and
introduces coordinate graphing of linear equations, factoring techniques, simplification of rational and
radical expressions , and the solution of quadratic equations.

Course Objectives: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to do the following without the
use of a calculator :

Solve linear , quadratic, literal equations, systems of equations and linear inequalities by choosing
an appropriate method .
• Use the specialized vocabulary describing the real number system and its properties as well as the
fundamentals of algebra.
• Manipulate (evaluate, simplify, or factor ) algebraic expressions , including expressions with
fractions and radicals .
• Solve linear equations and inequalities, systems of linear equations, and quadratic equations .
• Solve various application problems, which feature the mathematics under study using elementary
modeling techniques.
• Graph linear equations and systems of linear equations on a coordinate plane , isolating features
such as intercepts and slope .

Textbook: Bittinger, M. L.& D. J. Ellenbogen, Elementary Algebra: Concepts and Applications, 7th ed.
Pearson/Addison Wesley, 2006, bundled with Math XL.

Assessments:
• 10%: Algorithmically generated homework assignments in Math XL
• 10%: Algorithmically generated quizzes in Math XL.
• 50%: Four in-class tests on the following chapters
o Test #1: Chapters 1 & 2
o Test #2: Chapters 3 & 4
o Test #3: Chapters 5 & 6
o Test #4: Chapters 7 & 8
• 30%: Comprehensive final exam

Grading: A passing grade of C will not be assigned to students with a final exam score lower than 65%
regardless of the overall grade.

Percentage cutoff Grade
89.5% A
79.5% B
69.5% C
59.5% D
Below 59.5% F

General rules on exams :

1. Online assessments need to be completed and submitted on or before the due date given for each
assignment/quiz. Refer to course calendar (on page 3) for available dates.

2. There are no makeup tests for any reason. No tests will be given prior to the scheduled date
either. The average of the test scores will replace the lowest test score if you do not miss any one
test. If you have to miss one test, the missing one will be replaced by 80% of your final exam. If
you have to miss more than one test, you will be dropped from the class.

3. On the test date (including final exam), the test will not be given to a student 15 minutes late or
after someone finishing the test, whichever comes first.

4. Tests are closed book and closed-notes. No scratch papers are allowed during the test. Calculators
are not permitted during the exams. Cell phone should be turned off (not on vibrate) and stored
away. If cell phone is seen during the test, you will be treated as cheating on a test.

5. Students are bound by the Code of Academic Conduct and Reporting Policy that addresses issues
of academic dishonesty. If you are caught cheating on an exam, you will receive a grade of zero
for that exam and the incident will be reported and become part of your permanent record. Please
note that a zero grade assigned as a result of academic dishonesty will not be treated as the
missing score.

Attendance/Participation: Good attendance and active participation are crucial for the success of this
class. Please arrange your schedule accordingly prior to enrolling the class. Frequently missing the class is
not acceptable. Coming late or leaving early is also unacceptable. You may be dropped from the class for
an accumulation of absence (including being tardy/leaving early) of 4 hours. However, it is still your
responsibility to drop the class if you do not wish to complete. Failure to drop in a timely manner might
result in an F on your academic record. Final exam will not be given to a student who missing excessively
from the class.

Please be advised that it is student’s responsibility to preview the contents to be covered before coming to
the class and to complete the homework right after the class. In general, you should expect to spend 2-3
hours every day in reviewing the materials covered, completing the homework, and previewing the
materials to be covered in the next class meeting.

Students are expected to have all the necessary course-related materials/handouts ready when coming to the
class. Cell phones should be turned off (not on vibrate) and put away. No cell phones and materials
unrelated to the class should be visible during the class. All students should participate in discussions and
work on practicing sample questions given inside the class. Any disruptive behavior includes but is not
limited to talking, listening to iPod’s, reading materials other than classroom text, and obstruction or
disruption of classes may result in the exclusion from the class.

Students are responsible for all the announcements made in the class.

Tentative Course Calendar

Date Class Activities Online Assignments available dates
8/24 Class Instruction
1-1 ~ 1-5
Chap 1 HW (1.1 – 1.5): 8/24 ~ 8/30
Quiz 1 (1.1 – 1.5): 8/24 ~ 8/30
8/31 1-6 ~ 1-8
2-1 & 2-2
Chap 1 HW (1.6 – 1.8): 8/31 ~ 9/6
Quiz 1 (1.6 – 1.8): 8/31 ~ 9/6
Chap 2 HW (2.1 – 2.2): 8/31 ~ 9/6
9/5 (Friday): Last day to drop and be eligible for a refund of enrollment
9/7 2-3 ~ 2-7 Chap 2 HW (2.3 – 2.7): 9/7 ~ 9/13
Quiz 2: 9/7 ~ 9/13
9/14 3-1 ~ 3-5 Chap 3 HW (3.1 – 3.5): 9/14 ~ 9/20
9/19 (Friday): Last day to drop without notation on permanent record
9/21 3-6 ~ 3-7
Test #1 (Chaps 1&2)
Chap 3 HW (3.6 – 3.7): 9/21 ~ 9/27
Quiz 3: 9/21 ~ 9/27
9/28 4-1 ~ 4-4 Chap 4 HW (4.1 – 4.4): 9/28 ~ 10/4
10/5 4-5 ~ 4-7; 5-1 Chap 4 HW (4.5 – 4.7): 10/5 ~ 10/11
Quiz 4: 10/5 ~ 10/11
Chap 5 HW (5.1 – 5.4): 10/5 ~ 10/17
10/12 5-2 ~ 5-4
Test # 2 (Chaps 3& 4)
 
10/19 5-5 ~ 5-7
6-1 ~ 6-2
Chap 5 HW (5.5 – 5.7): 10/19 ~ 10/25
Quiz 5: 10/19 ~ 10/25
Chap 6 HW (6.1 – 6.2): 10/19 ~ 10/25
10/26 6-3 ~ 6-7 Chap 6 HW (6.3 – 6.7): 10/26 ~ 11/1
Quiz 6: 10/26 ~ 11/1
11/2 7-1 ~ 7-3
Test # 3 (Chaps 5&6)
Chap 7 HW (7.1 – 7.3): 11/2 ~ 11/8
11/9 7-4 ~ 7-6
8-1 & 8-2
Chap 7 HW (7.4 – 7.6): 11/9 ~ 11/15
Quiz 7: 11/9 ~ 11/15
Chap 8 HW (8.1 – 8.2): 11/9 ~ 11/15
11/14 (Friday): Last day to drop with a “W”
11/16 8-3 ~ 8-6 Chap 8 HW (8.3 – 8.6): 11/16 ~ 11/22
Quiz 8: 11/16 ~ 11/22
11/23 9-1 ~ 9-3
Final Review
Test # 4 (Chaps 7 & 8)
Chap 9 HW: 11/23 ~ 11/29
Quiz 9: 11/23 ~ 11/2
11/30 Holiday  
12/7 Final Exam (10:00 ~12:00 noon)  
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