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MATU-103 Final Project Instructions

PLO 3 – Quantitative Fluency: Explain how accurate calculations and symbolic operations are used in interpreting social and economic trends.

PLO 4 – Applied Learning: Evaluate a scenario in which academic knowledge and skills could be applied to a work or community issue.

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The Assignment

As individuals and as a society, we use mathematics every single day to make important decisions, drive advancements, and understand the world around us. In this assignment, you will choose a real-world topic (from the list below) and you will describe and discuss how mathematics is used to address current issues related to that topic. You will:

1. Describe the history of the topic as well as the history and development of the branch (or branches) of mathematics being used to address issues related to it,

2. Provide a summary of the formal mathematics being used to address issues related to your topic, with appropriate mathematical symbols, formulas, terminology, and concrete examples,

3. Explain how the mathematics is applied in the real-world to work, community, social, and economic issues.

See the section Outline Of Material To Present below for a more detailed explanation of what you will submit for each of these three sections.

The topics that you may choose from are

• Business

• Economics

• Equal Representation and Fairness

• Health and Healthcare

• Education

Review the section Tips To Get Started at the end of these directions for more information on the mathematics (and corresponding chapters from your textbook) that you may want to consider writing about for each of these five options.

You may write on any of these five topics, but you may not write on a different topic unless you have received express prior permission from your individual instructor. Your instructor is not required to approve alternative topics and will only do so if he or she is certain that there is sufficient research and information available to adequately complete this assignment.

Outline of Material to Present

The assignment is broken down into three parts: Introduction and Historical Context, Summary of Mathematics, Real

World Applications. Each part has a subset of questions and issues you must address. Please ensure that your

report includes a section for each of the three Parts listed below, and that each part addresses ALL of the subquestions

listed. Again, you must select one of the topics provided above unless you have received permission

from your individual instructor to write on another topic.

Part 1: Topic Introduction and Historical Context (approximately 2 pages)

Here is where you will introduce your topic and explain why it is important. You will also introduce the branch(es) of

mathematics that are used to address issues related to your topic, and provide a brief history of the mathematicians

or other key figures that contributed to its development. Please include each of the following:

1. Introduce your main topic (Business, Economics, Equal Representation/Fairness, Heath/Healthcare, or

Education). Why is this topic important? What are some key current issues (social, political, environmental,

technological etc.) related to your topic today? Why is it important to understand and address those issues?

2. Introduce and briefly describe the branch (or branches) of mathematics that may be used to address key

issues related to your topic. This is merely a general introduction; you will discuss the mathematics formally

in Part 2: Summary of Mathematics below.

3. Name at least 2 key figures that contributed to the development of the branch(es) of mathematics

described above. Who were they? When did their research take place? How did their work contribute to

the development of this type of mathematics?

Part 2: Summary of Mathematics with Examples (approximately 2-3 pages)

Here you will discuss the formal mathematics that are used to address issues related to your topic. (Note: You will

apply the math that you present in Part 2 to your application examples in Part 3 so you may want to review Part 3

before completing this section). For any topic that you choose, there will be many different areas of mathematics

that can be applied. Select one, or a few that you think are the most relevant, interesting, and applicable to your

topic and include the following:

1. Choose and describe at least one branch of mathematics (you may have more than one) that is used to

address issues related to your topic. Explain the formal mathematics by:

a. Presenting and describing relevant symbols, notation, and terminology

b. Presenting and describing key formulas

c. Presenting and describing important theories or theorems

2. Provide an example that illustrates the mathematics described above being applied to a situation

related to your topic (PLO 4), and solve the problem by:

a. Describing the problem and the steps of the solution in words

b. Presenting the mathematical steps of the solution using formal mathematical symbols,

notation, and formulas, and provide and interpret the final answer (PLO 3)

Note: You may choose an example from the problem sets in your textbook as long as you appropriately

cite this example in your references. See the section Tips To Get Started below to see some suggested

sections from your textbook

Part 3: Real World Applications (approximately 3-4 pages)

Here you will describe how the mathematics you presented in Part 2 is applied in the real world. You do not need to

use the mathematics to solve any particular problem; rather, explain how the mathematics is (or could be) used to

explain, address, or solve problems related to your topic, directly or indirectly, as described below. Include each of

the following:

1. Provide at least one real-world example of a specific work or community scenario related to your topic

where the mathematics you presented in Part 2 could be applied. (PLO 4) Describe the scenario and explain

how the math would address it. What is the purpose and benefit of using math to address this

scenario? Does it increase efficiency? Does it help with accuracy? What problems might we encounter if we

neglected to use math to help address this scenario?

2. Provide at least one real-world example where accurate calculations and symbolic operations (using the

mathematics you presented in Part 2) are, or could be used to interpret and/or explain a social and/or

economic trend related to your topic. (PLO 3) This example should be something different from your

example in #1 above. Describe the social or economic trend and explain how the math you presented in

Part 2 helps to interpret or explain it. (Examples of social or economic trends might be things like income

inequality, gerrymandering, equal housing, public healthcare, equal access to quality education, and so on.)

3. Describe and discuss how this topic and the mathematics you have presented are relevant to your own life,

directly and/or indirectly.

Formatting Requirements

Your paper should be a Word document, with embedded charts, graphs, figures, formulas and tables. It should be

APA or MLA Format, with name and page number on each page, and should include each of the following:

1. Title page: You should have a cover page. The cover page should have a specific title of your paper (Note:

“MATU 103 Paper” does not clearly define the topic you are presenting), your name, Brandman University,

MATU 103, term, and year. You might find it helpful to include an image of something representative of your

topic to provide a visual context for your report.

2. Write Up/Body: The body should be 6 – 8 pages. Please use a “page break” to separate the cover from the

body and the references from the body.

3. References: Please include all articles, books, websites, publications, or other information that you

utilized to obtain the information in your paper. The references come after the main body. At least three

references are required, not including the textbook.

4. Appendix (optional): Include an appendix after your references to include any charts, graphs,

calculations, or other information that supports your paper, but which is not necessary to include in the

main body.

Academic Integrity

The University expects that students will conduct themselves in an honest and ethical manner and respect the

intellectual work of others. Your paper will be submit through TurnItIn, which is a plagiarism detection service. Your

paper will receive a Similarity Report that represents the percentage of your paper that is similar to or copied from other

sources. Any type of plagiarism, including using work without referencing, copying another paper, not citing references

in the body of the paper, using a paper from another course, etc., will be met with penalties determined by the

instructor, including the possibility of failing the course, and having an Academic Integrity Violation Sanction Report

submitted to University administration. Note: You may not use a paper you wrote from a prior course, even if it is the

same class you are taking now, without prior permission from your individual instructor. If you have further questions

about academic integrity, please contact your instructor and/or see the catalog.

Tips To Get Started

Before selecting your topic, do a little research first! Read the sections of your textbook noted below, and do some internet searching to make sure you feel prepared to present a paper where you provide each of the following: a) an explanation of the formal mathematics with appropriate symbols, formulas, and examples, b) examples of how this branch of mathematics could be applied to a work or community issue, and c) an explanation of how this branch of mathematics can be used to interpret social or economic trends.

Below is a list of the main topics you may choose from, as well as some suggested readings and related discussion points from your textbook. You may choose any one of the Topics below for your project. If you want to write on a topic not shown here, you must obtain prior permission from your individual instructor. Your instructor is not required to approve alternative topics and will only do so if he or she is certain that there is sufficient research and information available to adequately complete this assignment.

Business

for this topic, you might discuss…

• Chapter 4, Graph Theory (for example: efficient routes, efficient scheduling)

• Chapter 7, Modeling (for example: currency conversion, supply and demand)

• Chapter 8, Consumer Math (for example: interest, investments, loans, mortgages)

• Chapters 13, 14, Probability and Statistics (for example: expected value)

Economics

for this topic, you might discuss…

• Chapter 6, Number Theory (for example: CPI, HPI, inflation)

• Chapter 7, Modeling (for example: population growth, inflation, currency conversion, supply and demand)

• Chapter 8, Consumer Math (for example: interest, investments, loans, mortgages)

• Chapters 13, 14, Probability and Statistics (for example: expected value)

Equal Representation and Fairness

for this topic, you might discuss…

• Chapter 7, Modeling (for example: population growth)

• Chapters 10, 11, Apportionment and Voting (for example: gerrymandering, measuring power, measuring fairness)

• Chapters 13, 14, Probability and Statistics (for example: polling)

Health and Healthcare

for this topic, you might discuss…

• Chapter 4, Graph Theory (for example: spread of disease)

• Chapter 7, Modeling (for example: spread of disease)

• Chapters 12-14, Probability and Statistics (for example: genetics, likelihood that a drug or vaccine is effective)

Education

for this topic, you might discuss…

• Chapter 7, Modeling (for example: projecting college graduation rates)

• Chapter 10, Apportionment (for example: allocating resources to classrooms, awarding assistantships to college students)

• Chapters 12-14, Probability and Statistics (for example: normal distribution of grades on standardized tests, academic performance influenced by other factors – i.e. comparing grade averages, correlation between funding and academic performance)

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