Topic outline

    • Overview and important information

      • If you have any issue with this module please speak to the lecturer Dr Rosemary Harris or use any of the communication channels (your adviser, student representatives, etc.) that QMUL offers.
      • Engagement will be monitored in line with the School's Student Engagement Policy.
      • There will be two in-term tests, one in Week 3 and one in Week 8, each counting 5% towards the overall module mark.  More details will be made available in due course in the corresponding weekly sections.
      • Note that some important details are different for MTH4107 (lectures 4pm Monday and 2pm Tuesday) and MTH4207 (lectures 2pm Monday and 12noon Wednesday) so please make sure you consult the correct information!
    • Lecture Notes and Key Learning Resources

      • The course will have similar content to recent years and most of Wolfram Just's typeset notes from 2018 (posted below) should still be applicable.  However, there may  be slight differences in presentation, choice of examples, and sub-divison of topics.  The relevant pages in the printed notes will usually be indicated in the weekly sections below so you can read ahead.
      • Hand-written visualizer slides from this year (with occasional printed material) will be posted by topic on the notes page linked in this section as well as in each weekly section. [MTH4107 and MTH4207 versions will hopefully be essentially identical.]  Note that the visualizer slides will not be posted immediately after each lecture; you should take your own notes in class and go through them carefully afterwards to ensure you understand every detail.  The lecture notes from this year will form the definitive record of the course content. Everything in these notes/lectures is examinable unless explicitly stated otherwise. 
      • And, finally, there should be video recordings available for all lectures. They can be found by clicking on the "Q-Review" links at the top of this page.  You may find the recordings useful for revision but you will only get the best initial learning experience by attending the lectures themselves, engaging with the presentation and taking the opportunity to ask/answer questions.

    • Coursework and Tutorials

      • A new written coursework assignment will be available in the relevant section of QMplus each Tuesday (with possibly some hard copies in Tuesday/Wednesday lectures).
      • Once a fortnight one of the questions will be indicated as the feedback question which must be handed in so we (and you!) can check on your progress.  The feedback questions will be submitted in tutorials of Weeks 2, 4, 6, 9, and 11.
      • Your submitted work should clearly display your student number, full name (with surname underlined) and signature.  Late work will not be accepted although your tutor may still be willing to give you brief verbal feedback on it in class.
      • The tutorials are designed to help you with the written coursework as well as improve your general understanding of course material.   Attendance will also enable you to build up a set of solutions for past exam questions (not available elsewhere).
      • Your marked work will be returned in tutorials with detailed comments on areas for improvement.  You should read the comments and discuss them with the tutor if necessary.
      • Your engagement with each of the 5 feedback questions will be recorded in your gradebook as either '0', '1', or '2', where
        • '2' means you handed in the feedback question and collected it (together with your feedback) at the following tutorial;
        • '1' means you handed in the feedback question but did not collect it at the following tutorial;
        • '0' means you did not hand in the feedback question.
      • Marks from the written coursework will not count towards your final mark for this module. However, it is compulsory that you attempt all written coursework and action may be taken if you fail to engage.  Information about your written coursework record may also be available to your advisor and/or used in writing references about you.
      • In parallel to the tutorials, you can also get one-to-one help at the course Office Hours (see information block on this page).
        • Detailed solutions will be available on QMplus after the corresponding deadlines with feedback on common mistakes added after marking.

      • Week 1 (Beginning 23rd September)

      • Week 2 (Beginning 30th September)

      • Week 3 (Beginning 7th October)

        • Week 3 reading: Printed lecture notes pages 15–21.
        • The Week 3 Test will take place on Wednesday 9th October at 13:10:
          • Locations should be communicated to you individually.
          • The test will last 40 minutes and consist of 10 multiple-choice questions.
          • The material you should revise is all of §1 and §2 in the notes.
          • The test will be closed book (i.e., no notes) and calculators will not be allowed (or needed).
          • A sample test (and solutions) can be found below.
          • The test is worth 5% of your module mark.

      • Week 4 (Beginning 14th October)

      • Week 5 (Beginning 21st October)

      • Week 6 (Beginning 28th October)

      • Week 7 (Beginning 4th November)

        • No lectures or tutorials.
        • No Tuesday Office Hour, but Wednesday Office Hour as usual.
        • Week 8 (Beginning 11th November)

          • Week 8 reading: Printed lecture notes pages 44–48.
          • The Week 8 Test will take place on Wednesday 13th November at 13:30:
            • Locations should be communicated to you individually.
            • The test will last 40 minutes and consist of 10 multiple-choice questions.
            • The material you should revise is everything up to, and including, §6 in the notes.
            • The test will be closed book (i.e., no notes) and calculators will not be allowed (or needed).
            • A sample test (and solutions) can be found below.
            • The test is worth 5% of your module mark.

        • Week 9 (Beginning 18th November)

        • Week 10 (Beginning 25th November)

        • Week 11 (Beginning 2nd December)

        • Week 12 (Beginning 9th December)

          • Assessment and marking criteria, exam preparation, past solutions

            • Your final mark for this module will be based on the two in-term tests (each counting 5%) and the final exam (counting 90%), which will take place in January 2020.
            • The coursework does not contribute to your final mark but it will help you to practice presenting your arguments on paper especially for slightly longer questions. Note that some of the questions in the coursework are likely to be drawn from past exams so studying the model solutions and feedback will enable you to see the level of calculation and presentation expected in the final exam.
            • The marking criteria give credit both for (clearly explained) method and final answer and you may also be asked to state basic definitions and theorems.
            • The best preparation for the final exam is to concentrate on understanding during the course but the past papers given below may be useful in testing that understanding. However, memorising past exam papers for exam preparation is generally a bad idea: you do not have to pass a past exam.
            • Note that this year's exam will be closed book and calculators will not be allowed. More details will be provided in due course.
          • Further Resources

            Reading

            It is not essential to buy a textbook since everything you need should be in the lecture notes (printed and visualizer).   However, if you want some extra background/practice, you might want to look at some of the books recommended at the link "Reading List - UPDATED"– they're all available in physical or electronic form at the library so you can try before you buy!  In particular, the following are recommended:

            • "A First Course in Probability" by Sheldon Ross (limited access as ebook) – probably closest to the general treatment of this course;
            • "Introduction to Probability" by David F. Anderson, Timo Seppäläinen, and Benedek Valkó – slightly more rigorous but very readable;
            • "Understanding Probability" by Henk Tijms (unlimited access as ebook!) – content covered in this module is contained in chapters 7–9, while parts of chapters 1–6 nicely illustrate theoretical ideas with plenty of examples. 

            Beware that in many books you will find slight differences in notation to our lecture notes, e.g., all three of the above use AB without a "cap" in the middle to denote the intersection of two events.

            Practice

            The books listed above contain many exercises and practice questions.  If you want more worked-through solutions you can try the two files below, the first courtesy of a previous course lecturer, the second written to accompany one of the books above (you'll have to be logged-in to see that link).