Math 3080 – Introduction to Probability

Lecture Time: 2:00pm  3:50pm (MW) Location: Knudson Hall 301

Textbook: Ross, A First Course in Probability 9th Ed. & Anderson, Seppäläinen, and Valkó, Introduction to Probability

Prerequisite: Math 1953 or Math 1963

Instructor: Mei Yin
   Office and Office Hours: Knudson Hall 203B, 10:30am  12:00pm (T), Zoom, 10:30am 12:00pm (R), or by appointment

TA: Evans Hedges
   Office and Office Hours:
Knudson Hall 305, 10:00am 12:00pm (M), Math Center, 10:00am 12:00pm (F)

Lecture Schedule: Here is a plan of the course (may be altered for pedagogical reasons as the course develops).

Ch. 1: Combinatorial Analysis
1 week
Ch. 2: Axioms of Probability
1.5 weeks
Ch. 3: Conditional Probability and Independence
1.5 weeks
Ch. 4: Random Variables
3 weeks
Ch. 5: Continuous Random Variables
3 weeks

Course Description: Topics of study will include basic probability models, combinatorial methods, random variables, independence, conditional probability, probability laws, and applications to classical problems.

Tentative Calendar:

The Week Of
Material Covered
September 12 September 16
Introduction, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5
September 19 September 23
2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4, 2.5
September 26 September 30
2.6, 2.7, 3.1, 3.2
October 3 October 7
3.3, 3.4, 3.5
October 10 October 14
4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, Review
October 17 October 21
Midterm, 4.5, 4.6, 4.7
October 24 October 28
4.8, 4.9, 4.10
October 31 November 4
5.1, 5.2, 5.3
November 7 November 11
5.4, 5.5, 5.6
November 14 November 18
5.7, Review

Grading: Your final grade for the course will be determined based on a numerical weighted average calculated as follows: Homework 30% Midterm 30% Final Exam 40%. This average percentage will then be converted into a final letter grade based partially on how other students perform this quarter, and partially on typical percentage grades from previous quarters of the course.

Homework: Homework will be assigned about once a week. The due date is every Monday at the beginning of the class. Homework must be turned in promptly to receive credit. For submitted problems, students are expected to show work and justify their answers. Please write your name on the first page. If you are submitting multiple pages, please staple them together. The eight highest homework scores will contribute to 30% of your final grade.

Exams: A midterm is tentatively scheduled during class time on Monday, October 17. The final exam is scheduled on Monday, November 21 at 2:00pm  3:50pm in our usual classroom. Makeup exams will only be offered in the event of extreme circumstances. If you think you have a problem which will force you to miss an exam, come talk to me as soon as possible.

Help: Additional handouts will be distributed throughout the quarter. Students are also encouraged to ask for individualized help from the instructor or the TA at any time.

Students with Disabilities: If you qualify for academic accommodations because of a disability or medical issue, please submit a faculty letter to me from Disability Services Program (DSP) in a timely manner so that your needs may be addressed. DSP determines accommodations based on documented disabilities/medical issues. DSP is located in Suite 22 on the lower level of Driscoll South, 303-871-2278. Information is also available online at; see the Handbook for Students with Disabilities.

Honor Code: Follow the Honor Code in all activities related to this course. Incidents of academic misconduct will be reported to and investigated by the Office of Student Conduct.

Religious Accommodations: University policy grants students excused absences from class or other organized activities for observance of religious holy days, unless the accommodation would create an undue hardship. Faculty are asked to be responsive to requests when students contact them in advance to request such an excused absence. Students are responsible for completing assignments given during their absence, but should be given an opportunity to make up work missed because of religious observance. Once a student has registered for a class, the student is expected to examine the course syllabus for potential conflicts with holy days and to notify the instructor by the end of the first week of classes of any conflicts that may require an absence (including any required additional preparation/travel time). The student is also expected to remind the faculty member in advance of the missed class, and to make arrangements in advance (with the faculty member) to make up any missed work or in-class material within a reasonable amount of time.

Other: Check the DU academic calendar for important dates throughout the quarter:

Note: Homework assignments on this page are subject to change. The website is always the most accurate source for assignments, so if you print out a copy of this page early, check the web each week to make sure the problems have not been changed. Your teacher will also call attention to it whenever any change is made.

Work the following homework problems at the appropriate time.

Chapter #
Theoretical Exercises
3, 7, 12, 13, 21, 22, 24
3, 12a, 13, 16
2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12ab, 13, 15, 18, 20, 23, 33, 42, 45, 51, 56
6, 9, 12, 18
5, 10, 15, 21, 26, 44 (look at only), 52, 70, 73
1, 2, 4, 11a, 13, 19, 20, 21, 30, 35, 38, 41, 43, 51, 59, 61, 64, 75
7, 16
1, 6, 13, 15, 21, 23, 24, 26, 31, 32, 33, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41
9, 30