Mini Syllabus

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Course ID: MAT142
Title: College Mathematics
Modality: Internet
Credit Hours: 3.00

Course Section Information

Institution: Rio Salado College

Section: 10369

Term: Fall 2014

Start Date: 8/25/2014

Weeks: 14

Last date to withdraw: None

Instructor: Kevin Willis

Course Materials

Be sure that you have all the necessary materials prior to the start date of your course.

Media and Technology

Computer with minimum specifications:

MyMathLab System Requirements
Note: TestGen® Plug-in IS NOT required.

Calculator: Texas Instruments model TI-83, 83 Plus, 84 or 84 Plus, is strongly recommended. A link to a tutorial for using the graphing calculator can be found on the Tools for Success page in the Chapter Contents in MyMathLab.

Note: Calculators with symbolic manipulating capabilities, or CAS, such as TI-89, TI-92 or TI-Nspire CAS are not allowed on exams.

Textbook required for Course:

Title: Survey of Mathematics with Applications (Bundled w/MyMathLab access code)
Author: Angel/Abbott/Runde
ISBN: 9781256976394

Rio Salado College has developed a unique Textbook Savings Program that uses customized textbooks and saves students up to 50% off the original price of textbooks. This textbook is included in the Textbook Savings Program and has been customized specifically for this course at Rio Salado College by Pearson Custom Publishing so that it contains information most relevant to the course. Your course materials are available through the Rio Salado College Bookstore.  All materials should be verified by ISBN before purchasing at the Rio Salado Bookstore or from another seller.

Course Description and Competencies

Official Course Description
Working knowledge of college-level mathematics and its applications to real-life problems. Emphasis on understanding mathematical concepts and their applications. Topics include set theory, probability, statistics, finance, and geometry.
Official Course Prerequisites
Grade of "C" or better in MAT120, or MAT121, or MAT122, or equivalent, or satisfactory score on District placement exam.
Course Note
Appropriate for the student whose major does not require college algebra or precalculus.
Official Course Competencies
  1. Distinguish between a subset and a proper subset.
  2. Use Venn diagrams to solve applied problems involving the union, intersection, and complement of sets.
  3. Distinguish between experimental and theoretical probability, and use each to solve applied problems.
  4. Use conditional probability to solve applied problems involving dependent events.
  5. Use probabilities to calculate odds, either in favor of or against a particular event, and visa versa.
  6. Solve probability problems involving combinations and permutations.
  7. Organize, analyze, and display data using multiple representations.
  8. Calculate and interpret measures of central tendency and dispersion.
  9. Calculate and interpret measures of location (percentiles and quartiles).
  10. Solve applications using the normal distribution.
  11. Solve applications involving loans and amortizations.
  12. Solve applications involving annuities.
  13. Calculate the annual interest rate given the annual yield and visa versa.
  14. Solve real-life problems using exponential growth.
  15. Use appropriate formulas and units of measure for composite geometric shapes and figures from real life problems.
  16. Apply unit analysis skills to solve applied problems.
  17. Use dimensional analysis to convert units of measurement between different systems.
  18. Use written and verbal communication to describe process and results.
  19. Model and solve real-world problems.

Course Requirements

  1. You must complete all assignments in the course to get a passing grade. The assignments which will be turned in and graded are the five online Quizzes found on the website that goes with this course. The first time you use the website, go to the MyMathLab System Requirements. After you have used the My MathLab Installation Wizard, you can then just use the website
  2. Examinations: There are two required in-person exam for this course. Please check the Calendar of Due Dates.
  3. Note: You must earn an average of 60 % on the exam in order to pass the course.

Note: Keep a record of everything you submit!

Time Requirements

Remember that this is a three credit-hour class. As such, you will need to dedicate significant time to this course. Plan to spend at least three hours on course content and at least six hours on homework for a total of at least nine hours each week. Be prepared to double your weekly class and study time if you choose an accelerated calendar.

Course Abstract

College Mathematics is an introduction to modern mathematics from an elementary point of view so that it is understandable to non-mathematics majors and non-science majors. The course will foster an appreciation for the art, beauty, history, and applications of mathematics. The students will be required to stay alert and extend themselves but the rewards are in the revelations that mathematics can be interesting and even exciting. The major areas of emphases will be: set theory, probability, statistics, finance, geometry, using current technology to analyze and perform mathematical tasks, and inductive and deductive reasoning.

Studying mathematics allows students to develop the ability to:

  • Be patient.
  • Rely on oneself to be an independent thinker.
  • Perform a complicated task that requires in-depth concentration and has many steps-a skill useful in any field of endeavor.
  • Read and follow detailed instructions.
  • Analyze material and extract the relevant facts.
  • Draw logical conclusions.
  • Determine that not enough information is given to solve a problem.
  • Find a solution by synthesizing unrelated bits of data.
  • Effectively and efficiently organize one's thoughts.
  • Follow precise rules, make no unwarranted assumptions and yet keep an open mind for information that alters or influences a situation to evaluate formulas-the need for this skill is increasing in many career fields such as business and social science.1

From Adjunct Mentor: Article, by Joyce Marie Hibbs, St. Phillips College, San Antonio, TX.

Students who have been away from mathematics for a long period of time or who have experienced recurring difficulties with mathematics in the past should consider the type of class format quite carefully. Experience shows that a traditional in-person classroom setting may be the method of choice for these students, especially if the student has had no prior exposure to a distance learning class. In this distance learning class, in order to be successful, do study all required material by doing on-line homework assignments prior to working on, and turning in, each on-line Quiz. Both homework and the on-line Quizzes can be found on the website Remember, the homework assignments are to be done at your discretion and are not worth points in the course; it is the Quizzes that are counted for points.

Course Outline

  1. Set Theory
    1. Venn diagrams
    2. Set operations
  2. Probability
    1. Experimental vs. theoretical probability
    2. Conditional
    3. Odds
    4. Permutations and Combinations
  3. Statistics
    1. Descriptive
    2. Normal distribution
    3. Percentiles and quartiles
  4. Finance
    1. Annuities
    2. Simple vs. compound interest
    3. Exponential growth
    4. Loans
    5. Rates vs. Yield
  5. Geometry
    1. Perimeter/area/volume
    2. Unit conversions
  6. Additional Topics - Departments may include one or more of the following topics in the course.
    1. Logic
    2. Numeration systems
    3. Inferential statistics
    4. Voting theory
    5. Math of music
    6. Index numbers
    7. Graph theory
    8. Geometry topics
      1. Symmetry
      2. Tessellations
      3. Fractals

Assignment Information

Each lesson, this class generally covers a varying number of sections in the textbook. In order to master the material presented in the textbook, students need to rework the examples shown in the textbook and to work a number of problems in each set of exercises. Many problems are intentionally somewhat repetitive in type and computational method. The intent in assigning several homework problems per section is to make sure you have sufficient reinforcement to enable you to remember what you have learned, which in turn will help you be successful on the on-line Quizzes.

Experience has shown that without rather extensive practice, these skills and ideas are all too easily forgotten. Since what is learned in later assignments usually depends heavily on remembering earlier work, it is essential that you not only complete your homework, but also that you work as many problems as you feel is necessary for you to master (and remember) the material. We repeat: The key to success is getting the concepts and skills into your long-term memory. Review what you know frequently!

Again when using the website, you will have the opportunity to do a homework assignment for each chapter that the course covers.

Each online Quiz is worth 20 points. The total number of points for the quizzes is 100 (20 x 5). In order to truly master the competencies of the course so that you are successful on the exams, you very well may need more practice with certain concepts. Therefore, you are encouraged to work as many homework problems as you feel necessary for you to understand the material covered during a given week. However, only the online Quizzes will be graded and counted toward completing this portion of the course requirement. You will also be required to take a midterm and final exam. Each of these exams is worth 150 points. And, again, you must take both the midterm and the final exams, (with an overall exam average of 60%) to pass MAT 142.

  1. It is a good idea to make up a checklist to use in order to make sure your quiz is completed to your satisfaction. This habit alone could make as much as a letter grade difference in your next math course, and many other courses as well. (it's a good idea to run through such a checklist mentally before handing in exams, too!).

  2. It is recommended that you find time to work on your mathematics assignments everyday. Research shows that people cannot generally study mathematics for long periods of time. A Harvard professor stated that the maximum time that he can maintain concentrated study of mathematics is three hours. Therefore, set aside somewhat less time to perform daily work on the assignments, say one to two-hour blocks at a time. If you set a goal of completing a minimum number of problems every day, you can have your weekends free!

  3. You can read the textbook, discuss mathematics with your instructor over the phone, or you may get help from our tutors, but it is not until you personally WORK A LOT OF PROBLEMS that true understanding of problem solving takes place.

Assessment Policy

Learning First: The assessment philosophy of Rio Salado College. Rio Salado College focuses on assessment-directed improvement for increasing student learning and improving the teaching and learning process. We believe that 1) learning is the primary purpose of assessment, 2) assessment should lead to improvement and not be an end unto itself, and 3) that faculty and students who understand the value of assessment and participate in assessment activities benefit most from this work. Therefore, the college expects every individual to participate fully in this effort.

Grading Procedure and Scale

Grading Procedure

There is a total of 600 points possible for MAT 142 (20 points times 6 quizzes, or 120 points for quizzes, and 240 points each for the midterm and the final exam). As noted above, the student earns points on a lesson-by-lesson basis from the successful completion of the assigned quizzes as well as through the midterm and final exams. During the semester, the possible points are computed as follows:


6 quizzes @ 20 points   = 120
1 midterm examination @ 240 points = 240
1 final examination @ 240 points   = 240
Course Total   = 600


Note: You must earn an average of 60% on the midterm and final exams in order to pass the course.

Grading Scale

The final course grade will be determined by the following scale:


540 - 600 = A (90% - 100%)
480 - 539 = B (80% - 89.99%)
420 - 479 = C (70% - 79.99%)
360 - 419 = D (60% - 69.99%)
0 - 359 = F ( 0% - 59.99%)


The same percentages will be used to determine the letter grades on your quizzes and exams.

Please Notice: The grading procedure for this course is based on the total number of points possible.

Though letter grades are not normally recorded on assignments and individual tests (though the numeric scores are), you may use the same percentages to determine your letter grade standing as you progress through the course.

The grading scale is administered equally to all students in the course. Each student has an equal opportunity to receive a grade based on the merit of the work he/she turns in (quizzes and formal tests). This means that in order to be fair to all students, those students whose final point totals are only a few points away from the next grade level will receive the grade for the level they have achieved. For example, if your final point total for the course is 319, your grade for the course will be a C; you need to have 320 points in order to receive a B.

This grading system has the advantage of allowing you to know your class standing at all times, and experience has shown that the majority of students appreciate the fairness of this system and work well within it.

The grading scale is administered equally to all students in the course. Do not expect to receive a grade higher than that merited by your total points. No point adjustments will be made for class participation or other subjective factors. Because we do not meet in a traditional classroom setting, there can be no "point adjustments" made for such things as "class participation" or other subjective factors, which are sometimes a part of traditional on-campus classes.

Please note: Extra credit is not available for this course.


This course contains in-person exams which must be completed at an approved testing site. Students who live within Maricopa county please see Midterm and Final Exam Information for Rio Salado testing sites and hours of operation.

Students who live outside of Maricopa county or are registered with Disability Resources and Services must request to have exams proctored by submitting the Proctored Test Request Form during the first two weeks of class. This form and additional information regarding proctoring and proctoring services may be found here.

Contact the Testing Center at (480) 517-8560 or (866) 577-8560 (Toll-Free) with any questions.

Final Grade Options

  • Letter grade (A, B, C, D, F) - awarded if the student completes all work, including the final exams.
  • Extension (in lieu of Incomplete grade) - Students may request an extension because of illness or other extenuating circumstances, if they have been doing acceptable work. The instructor will define the requirements and timelines to complete the course. Please Note: Instructors are not obligated to give extensions.
  • Withdrawal-Students may submit a withdrawal request on or prior to the “Last Date to Withdraw” indicated in their RioLearn Gradebook.  

    Students should not contact their instructor to request a withdrawal. A student wishing to withdraw from a class within the stated timeline must do so by visiting In extreme circumstances, students do have the option of requesting a complete withdrawal from the college by providing Student Enrollment Services with appropriate documentation.

  • Credit/No Credit Option (P/Z)-This course may not be taken on a credit/no credit basis.

Late or Missing Assignments

Assignments that have due dates are due on time according to the due dates in your gradebook. If you need to request an extension for an assignment, a request must be made to your instructor via RioLearn at least one week prior to the due date. You can request a due date change from the "Modify Due Dates" button in the "Due Dates" tab of your RioLearn Gradebook.

Late points may be applied at the instructor's discretion.

Submitting Assignments

All assignments are located in MyMathLab.

Note to students: Keep a record of everything that you submit.

Course Completion Policy

A student who registers for a Distance Learning course is assigned a "start date" and an "end date." It is the student's responsibility to note due dates for assignments and to keep up with the course work.

If a student falls behind, she/he must contact the instructor and request an extension of her/his end date in order to complete the course.

It is the prerogative of the instructor to decide whether or not to grant the request.

Copyright Acknowledgements

Some images used in courses are licensed as follows: Accunet/AP Multimedia Archive,,, EBSCO Image Collection, ARTstor Image Collection.

Library Services

The Rio Salado Library is committed to student success and provides a variety of materials and services to enhance student learning.  Utilizing Rio’s online library for your research is the best way to ensure that your sources are validated, authoritative, and appropriate for college-level coursework. Librarians are available to help you at all times via our Ask a Librarian live chat service. Also, the How Do I..? Streaming Video Series provides instruction on how to use the online library to find books, articles, ebooks, streaming films, and more.

Please note that when library materials (e.g., articles, ebooks, and streaming media) are integrated into your lesson content, you will see the notation “…provided to you through the Rio Salado Library.

Academic Misconduct

Academic Misconduct includes cheating, conspiring to cheat, soliciting to cheat, attempting to cheat, plagiarism, fabrication on an assignment, or other forms of dishonest presentation.

Posting assessments on an unauthorized web site, soliciting assessment answers and the unauthorized acquisition of assessments, assessment answers, or other academic material is cheating.

Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to, the use of paraphrase or direct quotation of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment.  It also includes the unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling or sharing of term papers or other academic materials.  Information gathered from the Internet and not properly identified is also considered plagiarism.

We expect every student to produce his/her original, independent work. Any student whose work indicates a violation of the MCCCD Academic Misconduct Policy (including cheating and plagiarism) can expect sanctions as specified in the college catalog.

Rio Salado College uses software that uncovers plagiarism from student to student and other data sources on the Internet. If a student is found to have plagiarized content, grade consequences will be applied in accordance with departmental policies.

Civility Policy

The faculty of Rio Salado place a high value on the importance of general ethical standards of academic behavior and expect that communication between students and instructors or among students shall maintain the level of formality and mutual respect appropriate to any college teaching/learning situation.

Language or behavior that is rude, abusive, profane, disruptive, or threatening will not be tolerated. Activity of this type is Academic Misconduct as defined in MCCCD Policy AR 2.3.11. Students engaging in such behavior will be removed from the course with a failing grade. Additional sanctions may be applied pursuant to AR 2.3.11.

Requirement for Active Class Participation

Please note that students may be withdrawn from class for non-participation.

If you receive financial aid of any kind, it is your responsibility to protect your eligibility to receive financial aid by meeting the active participation requirements of this class.

Honors Program

If you are taking this course for Honors credit, you must complete all assessments, including the Honors Project(s). The Honors Project(s) are listed in one or more lessons of the course and are designated for “Honors Students.” Failure to complete the Honors Project(s) will result in a failing grade in the course and a loss of Honors credit.

Change of Address

Please notify Course Support at (480) 517-8243 or 1-800-729-1197 or by email at Please include your name, student number, phone number, and new address including city, state, and zip code.

Disability Statement

If you have a documented disability, including a learning disability, and would like to discuss possible accommodations, please contact the Rio Salado Disabilities Resources and Services Office at (480) 517-8562 or


Course content may vary from this outline to meet the needs of this particular group.

Student Solution Center

Rio Salado College is dedicated to a quality learning experience and has provided the Student Solution Center webpage as a resource for students to raise issues to our attention. We look forward to the opportunity to provide an equitable solution for all involved parties. For grading or instructional issues, students should first contact their faculty member(s) in accordance with the Instructional Grievance Process. For non-instructional complaints, students may contact the Judicial Affairs team by telephone at 480-517-8749 or 480-517-8152, or email at Students may also contact their state regulatory agency; the Arizona SARA Council; and/or the Higher Learning Commission to escalate their concerns.

Rio Salado College Copyright

Course Content © Copyright 2016 Rio Salado College. All Rights Reserved.

Contact Us

Please see the following page for contact information.