MATH 104 Beginning Algebra
I. Course Description
Beginning Algebra is an introductory course to review the fundamental concepts
of arithmetic and algebra. This
course is the first in a sequence of two prealgebra math courses leading up to
College Algebra, MATH 150, and can
be used as a prerequisite for Finite Math, MATH 170. There are no prerequisites
for this course.
II. Course Objectives
•To communicate mathematically in both written and verbal
forms.
•To reason with symbolic and graphical representations.
•To use mathematics to solve realworld problems.
•To use technology, such as graphing calculators and computers, to enhance their
mathematical
understanding.
III. Overview and Course Goals
Welcome to Beginning Algebra (MATH 104), on line!
Week 1, we discuss fractions, real numbers, basic graphing concepts, and
learn some algebraic terminology and
properties.
Week 2, we continue the discussion of real numbers and variables. This
includes addition/subtraction/multiplication
of positive and negative numbers, the order of arithmetic operations, and the
meaning of exponents.
Week 3, we learn how to solve linear equations using the Addition and
Multiplication Principles of Equality. We’ll
cover solving equations with fractions and percents, and solving formulas for a
particular variable. We’ll learn how
to set up application problems, and then solve them using these techniques.
Week 4, we apply the techniques to solving linear inequalities. We’ll
look again at graphing, and learn how to graph
linear and nonlinear equations in two variables, both by hand and using a
graphing calculator. You will take a two
hour proctored midterm exam sometime on Wednesday – Saturday of this week.
Week 5, we’ll take a closer look at graphing. We’ll cover the calculation
and meaning of slope, various ways in
which the equation of a line can be written, and look at graphing linear
inequalities in two variables.
Week 6, we cover exponents and polynomials in more detail. We’ll discuss
polynomial operations including
addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of polynomial expressions.
Week 7, we’ll finish the discussion of exponents by looking at rules
governing negative exponents, and learn how to
use scientific notation when working with very large/small numbers. We’ll then
learn several methods used to
determine the factors of a polynomial.
Week 8, we’ll practice the factoring skills learned in Week 7, and then
use factoring to solve quadratic equations.
You will also take a two hour proctored final exam on Wednesday  Saturday of
this week.
IV. Measurable Learning Outcomes
After you have completed this course, you will be able to:
•Manipulate algebraic and numerical expressions including fractions, decimals,
and signed numbers.
•Solve linear equations and inequalities both graphically and algebraically.
•Evaluate formulas.
•Translate English phrases into algebraic expressions.
•Solve realworld problems using equations and inequalities.
•Graph lines and linear inequalities in the Cartesian Plane.
•Find the equation of a line in both slopeintercept and pointslope form.
•Interpret the meaning of the slope and the intercepts of a lien.
•Apply the rules of exponents to simplify algebraic expressions.
• Add, subtract, multiply, and divide polynomials.
•Use scientific notation.
•Factor polynomials.
•Solve quadratic equations by factoring.
V. Course Policies
There will be no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, national
origin, sexual orientation, religion, ideology,
political affiliation, veteran status, age, physical handicap, or marital
status. Students with documented disabilities
who may need academic services for this course are required to register
with the Coordinator for Disability
Services. Until the student has been cleared through the disability services
office, accommodations do not
have to be granted. It is vital if you are a student who has a documented
disability to read the entire syllabus before
signing up for the course. The structure or the content of the course can make
an accommodation not feasible. The
policies and related syllabus matters remain subject to change in the event of
extenuating circumstances.
Student Conduct
This course is offered online, over the Internet, using the Internet and the
World Wide Web, using publishing
technology provided by Desire2Learn, Prentice Hall, and Columbia College.
Participation online is expected and
continuous throughout the course. Failure to turn in assignments by the date
due, or lack of participation in online
discussions may result in the student being withdrawn from the course.
Emergencies should be communicated and
documented to the instructor as soon as possible. Students are expected to watch
the assigned videos, do the online
homework, and login to the class conferencing each week. In addition, students
will take a quiz each week. Active
participation in the course will prepare and guide students in studying for the
exams. The instructor will facilitate on
line discussions in the conference room by responding to posted messages. See "Ground
Rules for Online
Participation" for additional information.
In the math classes, a class week begins on Saturday and ends on Friday at
midnight. The only exception to
this is Week 1  the first week’s deadlines will be lengthened due to the week
starting on Monday rather than
on Saturday. Assignments scheduled for completion during a class week should
be submitted by the weekly due
dates stated on the grading schedule below. Late assignments will not be
accepted. See Section VII of this
document, or the Desire2Learn ‘Events’ calendar or ‘Checklist’ area for specific
deadline dates.
Ground Rules for Online Participation
Students should use email for private messages to the instructor and other
students.
The class Discussion area is for public messages so we can see what others have
to say about any given topic, and
respond to these.
Students are expected to participate in online discussions, as well as with
other appropriate online activities
including homework assignments and quizzes.
Academic Honesty
All Columbia College policies are in effect as described in the Academic
Dishonesty/Misconduct section of the
current college catalog. All your work must be your own unless collaboration has
been authorized. If collaboration
is authorized you must acknowledge the collaboration in writing. Your grade will
be based in large part on the
originality of your ideas and your written presentation of these ideas.
Presenting as one's own the words, ideas, or
expression of another in any form is cheating though plagiarism. The content of
these plagiarism sites would, if you
were lucky, get you a "D": in a course if you were not caught. It is substandard
work indeed, but you will almost always
be caught if you try to cheat, due to the plagiarism prevention tools available
to instructors. Plagiarism will not be tolerated
and the claim of ignorance is no excuse. Anyone found cheating will
automatically fail the course.
Levels of Communication
We will be using a minimum of two levels of communication in this course, one
formal, the other informal. All
email assignments are formal. They should be written as if you are communicating
with a client. The formal rules
of proper English and grammar apply for these submissions, and points will be
deducted for misspellings, incomplete
sentences, poor sentence structure, etc.
Conference postings are informal. You do not have to use
capitalization to begin sentences, there are no penalties for
misspellings, incomplete sentences, or other violations of grammatical rules.
The criteria that have to be met in
conference postings is that your messages must be original and
intelligible. You must communicate effectively. In
addition, you must meet the weekly requirements for full credit on conference
room assignments.
VI. Grading Policy
You will be able to track your average in the grade book exactly throughout the
course. The grading scale is as
follows:
A = 540600 pts
B = 480539 pts
C = 420479 pts,
D = 360419 pts
F = 0359 pts
You will know in advance the standards for each assignment. My goal is to give
prompt, clear, and useful feedback
to help you. Each student is responsible for:
• Completing weekly Reading/Video assignments, and doing textbook homework as
needed..
• Completing Weekly Homework/Discussion/Quiz assignments by the due dates. .
• Taking a proctored MidTerm & Final Exam in Weeks 4 & 8, respectively.
VII. Graded Assignments
Weekly OnLine (COURSECOMPASS/MyMathLab) Homework: 10% of course grade,
60 total
points.
Weekly Discussion and Calculator Assignments: 5% of course grade, 30
total points.
Weekly Quizzes: 10% of course grade. Each quiz counts 10 points, 60 total
points for session. The two
lowest quiz grades will be dropped from the final grade calculation.
MidTerm Exam (WednesdaySaturday of week 4): 35% of course grade, 210
points.
Final Exam (WednesdaySaturday of week 8): 40% of course grade, 240
points.
VIII. Course Schedule
WEEK  ASSIGNMENT  POINTS  DUE DATE (ALL TIMES IN CST/CDT ) 
Week 1  Introductory Posting  2  Within 4 days of you joining the class. 
Discussion Assignment  2  Midnight, Sunday, June 6, 2009  
Week 1 Quiz  10  Midnight, Sunday, June 6, 2  
Week 1 Homework  Varies by week  Midnight, Sunday, June 6, 2009  
Week 2  Discussion Assignment  4  Midnight, Friday, June 12, 2009 
Week 2 Quiz  10  Midnight Saturday, June 13, 2009  
Week 2 Homework  Varies  Midnight Saturday, June 13, 2009  
Week 3  Discussion Assignment  4  Midnight, Friday, June 19, 2009 
Week 3 Quiz  10  Midnight Saturday, June 20, 2009  
Week 3 Homework  Varies  Midnight Saturday, June 20, 2009  
Week 4  Discussion Assignment  4  Midnight, Friday, June 26, 200 
Week 4 Quiz  10  Midnight, Saturday, June 27, 2009  
Week 4 Homework  Varies  Midnight, Saturday, June 27, 2009  
Proctored Midterm Exam  210  Midterm can be taken any time between June 24 – June 27, 2009 

Week 5  Discussion Assignment  4  Midnight, Friday, July 3, 2009 
Week 5 Quiz  10  Midnight, Saturday, July 4, 200  
Week 5 Homework  Varies  Midnight, Saturday, July 4, 2009  
Week 6  Discussion Assignment  4  Midnight, Friday, July 10, 2009 
Week 6 Quiz  10  Midnight, Saturday, July 11, 2009  
Week 6 Homework  Varies  Midnight, Saturday, July 11, 2009  
Week 7  Discussion Assignment  4  Midnight, Friday, July 17, 2009 
Week 7 Quiz  10  Midnight, Saturday, July 18, 2009  
Week 7 Homework  Varies  Midnight, Saturday, July 18, 2009  
Week 8  Discussion Assignment  2  Midnight, Friday, July 24, 2009 
Week 8 Quiz  10  Midnight, Saturday, July 25, 2009  
Week 8 Homework  Varies  Midnight, Saturday, July 25, 2009  
2 hour Proctored Final Exam  240  Final exam may be taken any time July 22 – July 25, 2009 
IX. Course Activities
Homework: Each week, you will be assigned problems to complete in the
CourseCompass/MyMathLab
computer program that is packaged with a new textbook from MBS, or purchased
separately. Each week’s
homework is due by Saturday night at midnight, except for Week 1 (see schedule,
above).
Discussion/Calculator: In Weeks 18, there will be assignments that
involve the use of a graphing
calculator and/or require Discussion postings. These assignments will be due by
Friday at midnight, except in Week
1, when the deadlines is extended (see schedule, above).
Quizzes: Each week, a quiz will be posted by noon on Wednesday and is due
by midnight on Saturday,
central time, except in Week 1, when the deadline is extended (see schedule,
above). The quizzes will be closely
related to the suggested homework problems assigned for the week, and to the
exams. The two lowest quiz grades
will not be included in the calculation of your final grade. Late quizzes will
not receive credit.
Reading/Video: Each week, you will read 2 – 5 sections in the textbook.
You should also watch video
lessons associated with the material that we are covering.
Proctored (Supervised) Midterm & Final Exams: These
will be pencil and paper exams, on which you can use a calculator.
If you are going to have to use a nonCC site to take your exams, email me as
soon as possible so that we can discuss suitable proctors.
X. Course Materials
Required Text  Introductory Algebra, 5th Edition, by Robert Blitzer
The textbook package includes a physical textbook, and a CourseCompass/MyMathLab
access code.ISBN: 0321563913
If you are comfortable with an online textbook, you can purchase only the
standalone CourseCompass access. This
gives you immediate access to all class materials, including the online copy of
the book.
Students: Please note that the use of an eBook carries
certain risks: information may be missing due to copyright
restrictions, the book cannot be resold to MBS, and an eBook purchase cannot be
refunded.
Required Graphing Calculator
A TI83, TI83+, TI84, TI84+, TI86 or equivalent is required for all
of the Columbia College math courses. I would suggest shopping around – prices
for these calculators vary. It is
possible to purchase this calculator from MBS Direct or a retailer, or to buy a
used one using an online search for
information, going through auction sites, checking the classified ads in the
newspaper, etc. I will provide a link to
the calculator user manuals for the TI83 and 84.
Required CourseCompass Program Access – See above. I will send you the
CourseID that you need to
register in the CourseCompass program in an email about a week before school
begins. The email will come to
your Cougars account.
XI. Course Assignment Schedule – see Section VII,
above, for deadlines.
Week 1: Variables, Mathematical Models, Fractions, Real Numbers, Basic Rules of
Algebra
Reading: Sections 1.1 – 1.4, pp. 151
Homework: Each week there will be two online homework assignments in the
MyMath Lab program.
Online Discussion Assignment: This week, your online discussion
assignment is to do an introductory post
and one math discussion post.
Week 1 Quiz
Week 2: Working with Real Numbers, Exponents, Order of Operation
Reading: Sections 1.5 – 1.8, pp. 5394
Proctor Information Due: This class has a proctored midterm. I will
provide more information when class
begins.
Weekly Homework Assignment
Online Discussion Assignment: Each week, post one homework problem from
the list in the
CourseCompass ‘Assignments’ > ‘Weekly Assignment’ area. You can earn 04 points
on your post. Guidelines
and requirements for the math discussion posts can be found in the ‘Assignments’
area.
Week 2 Quiz
Week 3: Addition & Multiplication Properties, Solving Linear Equations,
Formulas & Percents,
Introduction to Problem Solving
Reading: Sections 2.1 – 2.5, pp. 107158
Weekly Homework, Discussion and Quiz Assignments
Week 4: Solving Linear Inequalities, Graphing Equations
in Two Variables
Reading: Sections: Sections 2.6. 4.1, 4.2, pp. 159172, 183246
Weekly Homework, Discussion and Quiz Assignments
Midterm exam is this week – can be taken any time Wednesday  Saturday
Week 5: Slope of a Line, SlopeIntercept & PointSlope Equations of a Line,
Linear Inequalities in
Two Variables
Reading: Sections 4.3 – 4.6, pp. 247280
Weekly Homework, Discussion and Quiz Assignments
Week 6: Working with Exponents and Polynomials
Reading: Sections 6.1 – 6.5, pp. 341384
Weekly Homework, Discussion and Quiz Assignments
Week 7: Negative Exponents, Factoring Polynomials
Reading: Sections 6.7, 7.1  7.4, pp. 393405, 413445
Weekly Homework, Discussion and Quiz Assignments
Week 8: Review of Factoring, Solving Quadratic Equations by Factoring
Reading: Sections 7.5, 7.6, pp. 446465
Weekly Homework, Discussion and Quiz Assignments
Final exam is this week – can be taken any time Wednesday  Saturday
XII. Instructor Information – Anne Ross
I graduated from the University of Missouri – Columbia in 1986 and 1989 with
degrees in Business Administration.
I’ve been teaching for Columbia College since 1989 – first in the classroom and,
for the past 5 years, online – and
have taught Finance and Math classes. I love teaching  especially teaching
online  and I am proud to be on the
faculty of Columbia College. I moved to Columbia from a small town in NW MO when
I was 11, and have watched
this college grow.
I’m an economist for the State of Missouri, and live on what my brother calls a
‘farmlet’ in the beautiful country near
Fayette, MO with several dogs, cats and other assorted wild animals. I recently
started a notforprofit organization
that provides temporary foster and medical care for the pets of families that
enter the local abuse shelter.
phone: (660) 2489843
It is much easier and faster to reach me via email, which I normally check twice
a day, at the minimum. I have
some hearing loss, so I don’t like to conduct ‘business’ via the phone. If you
DO call me, please speak slowly and
distinctly. Be sure to include your course/section information in your message.
I normally arrive at home late in the
evening, and will reply, via email, within 2448 hours. If you cannot use your
cougars email account, please email
me from your personal account so that I will be able to respond.
Fax: (314) 754 – 9821