Alexander Knop
S.E. Warschawski Assistant Professor
Research interests:
Proof complexity, structural complexity, differential privacy.
En Ru

For UCSD students
Math 15A (Introduction to Discrete Mathematics)

Winter, 2018 Winter, 2019



The textbook for this course is: Essentials of Discrete Mathematics, Second Edition. David J. Hunter. Jones & Bartlett Publishing, 2012
Grading policy:
Student's cumulative average will be computed by taking the maximum of these two grading schemes:
  • 10% Homework, 25% Midterm I, 25% Midterm II, 40% Final Exam
  • 10% Homework, 30% maximum of Midterm I and Midterm II, 60% Final Exam
Homework is a very important part of the course and in order to fully master the topics it is essential that you work carefully on every assignment and try your best to complete every problem.
Your total homework score will be based on the total possible homework points available. After each homework you can complete an optional online HW review highlighting key concepts. If you complete the questionnaire for an assignment and that assignment is your lowest homework score, that score will be dropped from your homework average.
Homework may be done alone or in a group of at most 5 people. Partners may be in any of the sections of the class. You are free to change partners between assignments. Problems should be solved together, not divided up between partners. For homework help, consult your textbook, class notes, lecturer, and TAs. It is considered a violation of the policy on academic integrity to:
  • look or ask for answers to homework problems in other texts or sources, including the internet, or to
  • discuss the homework problems with anyone outside of your group (unless you are in office hours with someone from the instructional team).
Homework solutions should be neatly written or typed and turned in through Gradescope by 11pm on Friday. Illegible assignments will not be graded. For step-by-step instructions on scanning and uploading your homework, see this handout. Late homeworks will not be accepted. Submit early drafts well before the deadline to make sure partial work is graded.
Quizzes are another significant part of the course. We will have them in the last ten minutes of each Thursday lectures and they will cover the material covered in the previous three lectures.
Peer-review sessions:
One of the most important parts of being a mathematician is being able to find flaws in your own and other's proofs. In order to help you learn this skill you will have short peer-review sessions during your discussions.
Discussion Board:
The Piazza forum for our class where questions can be posted and answered. It is a very helpful resource!

Office Hours

  • 5880A, AP&M building,
    • Tuesday: 3.30pm - 4.30 PM
    • Thursday: 1pm - 1:50 PM

Teaching assistants

  • Aakash Arayambeth,
    CSE B215:
    • Thursdays: 8 AM - 10 AM


Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
January 06 January 07 January 08
0 Introduction
January 09 January 10
1.1-1.5 Direct Proofs
January 11 January 12
January 13 January 14 January 15
1.1-1.5 Proofs by Contradiction
January 16 January 17
3.1-3.5 Recursive Definitions and Proofs by Induction
January 18 January 19
January 20 January 21
Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday
January 22
Catch up Review
January 23 January 24
Midterm I
January 25 January 26
January 27 January 28 January 29
3.1-3.5 Recursive Definitions and Proofs by Induction
January 30 January 31
3.1-3.5, 1.1-1.5 Recursive Definitions and Proofs by Induction, Predicates and Connectives
February 01 February 02
February 03 February 04 February 05
1.1-1.5, 2.2 Predicates and Connectives, Sets
February 06 February 07
2.2 Sets
February 08 February 09
February 10 February 11 February 12
2.2, 2.3 Sets, Functions
February 13 February 14
2.3, 2.4 Functions, Equivalence Relations
February 15 February 16
February 17 February 18
Presidents' Day Holiday
February 19
Catch up Review
February 20 February 21
Midterm II
February 22 February 23
February 24 February 25 February 26
2.4, 2.5 Equivalence Relations, Partial Orderings
February 27 February 28
4.3, 4.1 Counting with Functions, Basic Counting Techniques
March 01 March 02
March 03 March 04 March 05
4.2, 1.1-1.5 Selections and Arrangments, Propositional Logic
March 06 March 07
1.1-1.5, 1.1-1.5 Propositional Logic, Predicate Logic
March 08 March 09
March 10 March 11 March 12
1.1-1.5, 2.1 Predicate Logic, Graphs
March 13 March 14
Catch up Review
March 15 March 16
March 17 March 18 March 19 March 20 March 21
Final Exam
March 22 March 23