Core Module 3: Math Tools

To-Do Date: Jan 30 at 11:59pm

Reading: AIDMA Chapter 4.2, Chapter 6, and Chapter 7.1-7.2 (and maybe 7.3 for CS201 co-takers, see below). As a preview, they cover:

  • 4.2: covers division, the mod operator, and congruence.
  • Ch.6: covers sequences, recurrence relations, and evaluating sums and products.
  • 7.1-7.2: covers asymptotic notations (which includes the Big-O notation that will soon be covered in CS201, but also more) and growth rates of common positive functions.
  • 7.3: how to use asymptotic notations to analyze algorithms (useful for those in CS201 right now; may be boring for everyone else).
    • Alternatively, CS201 co-takers can take a look at past CS201 material on sorting/recursive algorithms (slide decks I and II). What we will probably need is how MergeSort works, which unfortunately isn’t covered until March this semester in CS201. So consider this a preview/frontload of later CS201 material and not extra work in CS230.

Several notes:

  • Your miles on these chapters may vary depending on how much background you already have with the topics. Depending on how much of the material is new to you, this week’s reading may feel rather long. Start early, especially if you need to read 7.3! You can reap your reward later in the semester. By the time CS201 covers the topic, you will be coasting.
  • You can safely skip the following parts:
    • Since AIDMA introduces set theory before these chapters, the text immediately following Thm 7.36, Fill-in-the-details 7.37, and Example 7.38 may not make sense yet for you. It is okay to skip those.
    • As long as limits are not totally foreign to you, you can safely skip the entire 7.1.4 (or do a casual skim to gloss over it.)

To earn a satisfactory completion for CM3:

  • Get 80% or more questions correct in CM3: Math Tools Prepare Quiz (note that there’s a 15min cooldown between consecutive attempts)
  • Get a completion on recitation work by either attending or submitting on Gradescope
  • Get a satisfactory or above on the Gradescope assignment


  • Get an excellent on all Gradescope assignment questions

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