# Welcome to Seminar Three

### Quadratic Equations (MTH112)

## Weekly Content

This week we're going to discuss a variety of methods for dealing with quadratic equations - a specific kind of polynomial. These come up in a variety of different physical applications such as ballistics and operations management.

## Weekly Motivation

*[I do not] carry such information in my mind since it is readily available in books. ...The value of a college education is not the learning of many facts but the training of the mind to think.*[1]

-- Albert Einstein

Think about how Einstein's observation applies to your own education. Most students who are working on a college degree are doing it for the specific goal if improving their job prospects but Einstein's comment encourages us to think about the bigger picture. What do we get from education beyond mere factual knowledge? How can we benefit from taking classes that aren't immediately relevant to our short term goals? What can we do to position ourselves for a future whose needs we can't predict?

[1] In response to a question about not knowing the speed of sound,

*Einstein: His Life and Times*(1947) Philipp Frank, p. 185

## Support Services

If you feel that you're in need of additional support, the College has an Online Math Center where you can get live, one-on-one support from an experienced tutor. To set up an appointment click on the "Get Math Help" button on the left side of the page. I'll also be glad to discuss any questions that you have with you. If you'd prefer not to discuss your questions in the public discussion, you can always post them in our private discussion area and I'll reply to you there or you can contact me on Skype at prof.gregory.allen.

## Private Discussion Areas If you haven't already, be sure to subscribe to the discussion board in our private discussion area. Doing so will tell Blackboard to send you an email every time I post something there. Every week I'll post a summary of your previous week's grades there and you'll be responsible for following up on any comments that I make. You can access our private discussion area by clicking on the Feedback/Groups button on the left side of this page then clicking on your name, then Group Discussion Board then your name again. | ## Discussion Posts As you work on this week's discussion, remember that I'm looking for specifics, not generalities. For example, if you're asked for an example of how a technique or concept is used in the real world, you should give a specific example not just a single general statement. For example, "I use fractions when cooking." isn't the kind of post that I'm looking for. This is the kind of college level response that I'm expecting: "I use fractions when changing the yield of recipes. For example, if a recipe provides food for four, I would need to cut that down to two to feed myself and my son. To do that I would take every ingredient and divide it by two (or multiply it by one half). That would make, for example, 3 cups of flour into (1/2) * 3 = 3/2 or 1 1/2 cups." | ## Getting Help The University offers a live tutoring service to all students. If you feel you need to actually speak to someone about your questions, you can set up an appointment with the Online Math Center by clicking on the "Online Tutoring" button on the left side of this page. That will take you to a form that you can fill out to be contacted by one of the math center's tutors. |

## Private Discussion Areas

If you haven't already, be sure to subscribe to the discussion board in our private discussion area. Doing so will tell Blackboard to send you an email every time I post something there. Every week I'll post a summary of your previous week's grades there and you'll be responsible for following up on any comments that I make. You can access our private discussion area by clicking on the Feedback/Groups button on the left side of this page then clicking on your name, then Group Discussion Board then your name again.

## Discussion Posts

As you work on this week's discussion, remember that I'm looking for specifics, not generalities. For example, if you're asked for an example of how a technique or concept is used in the real world, you should give a specific example not just a single general statement. For example,

"I use fractions when cooking."

isn't the kind of post that I'm looking for. This is the kind of college level response that I'm expecting:

"I use fractions when changing the yield of recipes. For example, if a recipe provides food for four, I would need to cut that down to two to feed myself and my son. To do that I would take every ingredient and divide it by two (or multiply it by one half). That would make, for example, 3 cups of flour into (1/2) * 3 = 3/2 or 1 1/2 cups."

"I use fractions when cooking."

isn't the kind of post that I'm looking for. This is the kind of college level response that I'm expecting:

"I use fractions when changing the yield of recipes. For example, if a recipe provides food for four, I would need to cut that down to two to feed myself and my son. To do that I would take every ingredient and divide it by two (or multiply it by one half). That would make, for example, 3 cups of flour into (1/2) * 3 = 3/2 or 1 1/2 cups."

## Getting Help

The University offers a live tutoring service to all students. If you feel you need to actually speak to someone about your questions, you can set up an appointment with the Online Math Center by clicking on the "Online Tutoring" button on the left side of this page. That will take you to a form that you can fill out to be contacted by one of the math center's tutors.