Math 120A, Winter 2015

Course description

We will study the group axioms, subgroups, permutation groups, isomorphisms, homomorphisms, cosets, and factor groups. Because the subject is rather abstract, definitions and proofs will play a central role in the course.


Homework exercises will be assigned after each lecture and posted in the schedule below. The homework assigned in a given week will usually be due on the following Wednesday in your discussion section. Late homework will not be accepted. Your lowest homework score will not be used in calculating your grade in the class.

You may collaborate on the homework with other students and seek help from any source. As always, you must credit your collaborators and cite your sources.


Quizzes will usually be given on Wednesday in the discussion section and cover the same topics as the homework due on that day. Make-up quizzes will not be given. Your lowest quiz score will not be used in calculating your grade in the class.

Midterm exam

Sample midterm exam and solutions

Midterm exam (white) and solutions

Midterm exam (yellow) and solutions

Schedule (subject to change)

Week 1 (homework set 1 and solutions): Week 2 (homework set 2 and solutions): Week 3: (homework set 3 and solutions): Week 4: (homework set 4 and solutions): Week 5: (homework set 5 and solutions): Week 6: (homework set 6 and solutions): Week 7: (homework set 7 and solutions): Week 8: (homework set 8 and solutions): Week 9: (homework set 9 and solutions): Week 10: (practice problems and solutions):


Your numeric course grade will be calculated as follows: Letter grades will be assigned so as to make the grade distribution close to the one recommended by the department. Letter grades will be at least 'A-' for 90%, 'B-' for 80%, etc.; probably significantly higher.