Elementary Number Theory - MAS 4214-901

Spring Semester 2003--MW 7:30-8:45  PHY 120
   Instructor: W. Edwin Clark
   Office: PHY 326 A
   Office Hours: MW 2:00-3:00. (Also, immediately after class or by appointment.)
   Email: eclark@math.usf.edu ( If you need to contact me, email is the best way.  I read my email frequently from home as well as from the office. Voice mail is not as likely to reach me. )
   Homepage: http://www.math.usf.edu/~eclark/  (This syllabus will be on my homepage in case you lose it. You may also go there if you are curious about my research and academic genealogy.)

Text:  Elementary Number Theory by W. Edwin Clark. The text can be obtained from Pro-Copy,  5219 E. Fowler Ave. (adjacent to Publix) , for the cost of reproduction and binding ---about $13.50. [If you have a postscript reader and printer you can download and print the text from here.  Note that it is prepared for two-sided printing.]  We will also cover four Maple worksheets which may be downloaded free from here. But you must have Maple 7 or Maple 8 on your computer to open the worksheets.

Course Objectives:  The plans are to cover the entire text and work all the problems in the text.  The main topics are:

HOMEWORK: Homework will be assigned frequently. Students will be responsible for knowing how to work correctly all assigned problems. Homework will be collected every Monday unless otherwise announced in class. All assigned problems will be collected, but only a few randomly selected problems will be graded.  Hints may be given for difficult problems before the assignment is due if requested. Students should ask in class about problems they are unsure of -- after the homework has been graded. If a given problem is not solved completely significant effort shown on the homework paper will count for full credit. Such effort includes writing down of all definitions involved in the statement of the problem, writing down all previous material related to the statement of the problem,  and working out a number of typical examples related to the problem.  Late homework will not be accepted. However,I will drop the two lowest homework grades.


    Monday Quizzes:  On each Monday, unless there is a holiday, a quiz will be given at the beginning of class.  This quiz will cover definitions and statements of named theorems presented in class any time prior to the quiz. The quizzes will also cover examples from class and simple computations that will be easy for those doing their homework.  There will be no makeups for student who are late or fail to take a quiz. However, I will drop the lowest  2 quiz grades .

    Exam 1: Monday, February 10

    Exam 2: Monday, March 24

    Exam 3: Monday, April 21

    Final Exam: See the Spring 2003 Final Exam Matrix

COURSE GRADES:  I will calculate the average of the grades on the Monday Quizzes, Homework, Exams 1, 2 and 3. Your course grade will be based on the maximum of this average and your Final Exam grade.  Instead of having makeup exams, the Final Exam will serve as a makeup for any of the missed  exams.

I will use the following scale to assign plus/minus letter grades

98-100 = A+, 93-97 = A, 90-92 = A-,
88-89 = B+, 83-87= B, 80-82 = B-,
78-79 = C+, 73-77 = C, 70-72=C-,
68-69 = D+, 63-67 = D, 60-62 = D-,
0-59 = F.

Join the Class Mailing List (numtheory).

It is important for students to have email accounts from USF and/or a private internet service provider and as soon as possible join the class mailing list:  numtheory.

To join send an email from your own email account with no subject and no message to the email address:


This will subscribe the address you have sent the message from.  If you wish you can join from another account. The first message from the list will explain how to use the list. If you don't get a Welcoming Message immediately, let me know.

I will use this mailing list to communicate with the class so it is very important that you subscribe as soon as possible and read your email frequently.  Previews of Monday Quiz questions will usually distributed via this mailing list.

To obtain an email account go to:


For techincal support for connecting from home, using email, etc, go to:




Maple Worksheets:  You must have Maple 7 or Maple 8 on your computer to be able to read these worksheets. Students may download the following Maple worksheets.  Sometimes a single or double click will allow you to download the files.  Some times you may have to  hold down the right mouse button (on a Mac just hold down the single mouse button) then select Download file to disk or Save file to Disk. Then you should be able to open the file with Maple. You might open Maple first and then while in Maple choose Open from the File menu item.

OpenQuestions    worksheet#1    worksheet#2    worksheet#3    worksheet#4

Interesting Number Theory Webpages: