Homework for Math 309, Fall 2014

Two kinds of homework are required in the course. Generally they are due on Tuedays and Fridays. 
1)   HW:  Written assignments based on textbook exercises
First assignment, HW1, due in class on Friday, September
Follow the link for more details.

2)   WW:  Computer generated assignments using WeBWorK

WebWorK is a computer generated and graded homework system. The comments here and the online documentation should be more than enough to get you started. WebWorK has been used in this course for several years, and also n most of our calculus courses -- so there are lots of other students available whom you can also consult to get started.

WeBWorK allows you to open a homework set at a scheduled time, make a hardcopy to take away, and submit solutions online later up until the due deadline. When you submit an answer, WebWorK immediately tells you whether your answer is correct.  If not, you can resubmitt answers to any question as often as you like, without penalty, until the closing time for the assignment. This allows you to try to figure out what you did wrong and, I hope, to understand the question better.  

WeBWorK is supposed to be tool to help you practice with the more computational types of material in the course. You can help each other with ideas or hints on the problems, but in the end you are supposed to solve the problems yourself and submit your own work.  But  ultimately, WebWorK functions on an "honor system."  Notice that
  • getting an answer from someone else just intereferes with an opportunity to learn. There's no time pressure to find the solution (if you don't put things off to the last minute).  When you miss a problem, you can just try again a bit later.
  • WebWork problems usually vary numerically from person to person so that just "knowing the answer somebody else got" usually won't help.  
  • some exam questions are closely related to WeBWorK problems, so it's worth the investment to figure them out for yourself in the more relaxed WeBWorK setting
  • finally, just getting a few points boost in your WebWorK score doesn't contribute that much to your overall course grade anyway.    
If there are indications (from the computer system, or otherwise) that you are not finding and submitting your own WeBWorK solutions, this may constitute an academic integrity violation.

Here's  the pattern for most of our WebWorK assignments:
  • Each WW assignment becomes available online at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday.  
    Example: WW1 will open at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, 8/27  
    This first WeBWorK assignment will be fairly short since not much material will have been covered.  Part of the purpose is to get you acquainted with WebWorK. (Don't cut the deadline too close; the time shown on your watch is probably not perfectly synced with the computer system's clock.)
  • Each WW assignment closes (answers due online!) at 11:59 p.m. the following Tuesday -- and the next WW assignment opens online two minutes later.
    Example: answers for WW1 must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, 9/2; WW2 will open at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, 9/3.
Contact me right away if your name does not appear in WebWork when you login to get your assignment; include your name, WU ID number and email address and I will add you to WebWork's list.

Once you're inside a WebWorK assignment, there's an option to send me messages.  If you are having difficulty with a particular problem, it's best to use this option to message me rather than regular email-- when the message from inside WW gets send to me, it lets me directly your  the particular WW problem set

Here is a General Orientation to WebWorK with much more detail about using WebWorK and its role in the course.
To get started:  go to  WebWorK.  Bookmark this page since you'll need to use it often.  Try right away to logon to WebWorK.
Contact me right away if your name does not appear in WebWork when you login to get your first assignment; I will add you to WebWorK's list as quickly as I can so you don't lose too much time.  Include your name, WU ID number and email address in your message,

Homework and Academic Integrity  

Talking with other students about homework problems is a good way to learn and I encourage it
, but each student must write
up his or her solutions independently.  Therefore, no solutions from two students should look too much alike.  After all,
everybody says things in a unique way, makes up notation as needed, etc.

Suggestion:  a good way to help each other learn and to avoid "copying"  even inadvertently from another student is to talk about problems together without taking any notes away from the conversation. This lets you share your understanding and ideas, but then forces you to reconstruct your own understanding on paper.  In case of any doubts, ask me.