## Fall 2011

Class Number: 1390
This course covers topics that are not part of the standard departmental offerings and varies from semester to semester. Students may take this course more than once. Prerequisite: MATH 201 or permission of instructor.
Div: II, Approach: Quantitative Methods Haverford: Natural Science (NA)
Current topic description: What is enumerative combinatorics? It is
a collection of techniques for enumerating a set of objects (saying
how many) without counting them (listing all the possibilities).
Combinatorial techniques are often applied to questions of probability
in situations when all outcomes are equally likely. For example, in a
game of poker, any combination of five cards is equally likely to be
dealt from a well-shuffled deck of cards. What is the probability
that any particular set of five cards we are dealt form a full house
(three of one kind and two of another)? To answer this question, we
divide the number of full-house combinations by the total number of
five-card combinations. To obtain these two numbers without listing
all the possibilities, we use combinatorics. Although combinatorial
problems can often be stated in the language of puzzles and games, the
results have applications throughout mathematics, both pure and
applied. My own work has been applied to algebraic topology, group
theory, theoretical linguistics, biometrics (iris-recognition),
nano-barcodes, and other engineering applications. Pre-requisite:
MATH 102.

Fulfills: Class Nbr: 1390 Div: II; QM; NA

Myers,Amy N.

Bryn Mawr, PK336

### Meeting Times

TTH 2:15pm-3:45pm