Mathematics 321

MATH 321: History of Mathematics

Prerequisites: Math 169 or Math 171 or permission of instructor

Credit Hours: (3)

This course will focus on the pursuit of mathematics as a human endeavor, illustrating how mathematics has developed over the past 5000 years including the contributions of diverse cultures. This course will cover not only the evolution and historical perspective of the development of mathematics, but will include a study of the mathematics itself.

Detailed Description of Course

Understanding the contributions of different individuals and cultures toward the development of mathematics and the role of mathematics in culture and society, which will include:

1.Exploration of different civilizations’ number systems

2.Discovery of mathematics from ancient civilizations, such as Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, China, India, and the Middle East 

3.Analysis of mathematics during the medieval and renaissance periods

4.Development of the Calculus

5.Development of Probability Theory

6.Exploration into the history of Number Theory

7.Development of Non-Euclidean Geometries

Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

In addition to lecture, students will work collaboratively on assignments created to help students understand the mathematics introduced throughout history. Modern and classical forms of technology will be used to present and work the material in and outside class.

Goals and Objectives of the Course

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:
    1) Examine the historical development of number systems, algebra, geometries, calculus, and probability.
    2) Utilize historically appropriate mathematical methods to solve relevant mathematical problems of that time in history.
    3) Examine the interconnection among the different branches of mathematics and the expansive nature of mathematical development.
    4) Learn how historical developments in mathematics have changed the fundamental understanding of the world

Assessment Measures

Students will demonstrate content understanding via tests, homework problems, collaborative work in class, class discussion, and/or course projects.

Other Course Information


Review and Approval

November 7, 2017
June 20, 2015