Syllabus for MAT-115

INTERMEDIATE ALGEBRA

# COURSE DESCRIPTION

Intermediate Algebra (MAT-115) is designed for students who have studied elementary algebra and who need additional knowledge and skills for success in college algebra, precalculus, and other college courses that require mathematics.

The course affords a transition between elementary algebra and college algebra and provides a solid foundation in the basic concepts of algebra. The emphasis throughout the course is on skill development and problem solving through the use of applications. Topics include linear equations and inequalities, quadratic equations, graphing, rational expressions, functions, exponents, radicals, parabolas, and systems of linear equations.

# COURSE OBJECTIVES

Intermediate Algebra has as its overall goal enabling you to acquire the algebraic skills and knowledge necessary for success in this and future courses in mathematics and courses in science and technology. Upon successful completion of the course, you should be able to:

CO1    Apply basic algebraic skills and knowledge to the solution of real-world problems.

CO2    Demonstrate a logical approach to solving problems.

CO3    Solve a variety of problems requiring the integration of knowledge acquired from the various

topics studied.

CO4    Evince confidence in your ability to solve mathematical problems through practice and application.

# COURSE MATERIALS

You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is a free, open-source textbook which you may access online and/or save as a PDF.

### Required Textbook

• Marecek, L. (2017). Intermediate algebra. Houston, TX: OpenStax.

# COURSE STRUCTURE

Intermediate Algebra is a three-credit, online course consisting of ten modules. Each module includes learning objectives, study materials, activities, and quizzes. Module titles are listed below.

• Module 1: Foundations

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 2: Solving Linear Equations

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 3: Graphs and Functions

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 4: Systems of Linear Equations

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 5: Polynomials and Polynomial Functions

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 6: Factoring

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 7: Rational Expressions and Functions

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 8: Roots and Radicals

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 9: Quadratic Equations and Functions

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

• Module 10: Exponential and Logarithmic Functions

Course objectives covered in this module: CO1, CO2, CO3, CO4

# ASSESSMENT METHODS

For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments, take online module quizzes, and take three proctored examinations. See below for more details.

Consult the course Calendar for assignment due dates.

## Discussion Forums

You will be required to participate in five graded online discussion assignments. There is also one ungraded but required Introductions Forum in Module 1.

Discussion forums are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules. The purpose of the discussion forums is to help make the connection between the course concepts and the goals of the course. In discussion posts, you express your opinions and thoughts, provide support and evidence for the position(s) you take on a subject, and have the opportunity to ask questions and expand on insights provided by your classmates. Active participation is vital to your overall success in this course.

Located within the Evaluation Rubrics section of the course website is the online discussion forum rubric used to aid in the grading of all online discussion assignments.

## Quizzes

You will be required to take module quizzes for this course. These quizzes will help prepare you for the exams. You will see up to five quizzes grouped by chapter section in one module.

## Written Assignments

You are required to complete ten written assignments. The written assignments consist of exercises based on assigned sections in the textbook. You will be provided with the assignment sheet so you can work directly in Google Docs or download it as a Microsoft Word document. For more details on how to use equations to prepare your assignment electronically, follow the note about preparing assignments in the Written Assignment 1 section of Module 1.

## Examinations

You are required to take three proctored exams. See the Course Calendar for the dates of your exam weeks.

For all of these online exams, you are required to use the University's Online Proctor Service (OPS). Please refer to the Examinations and Proctors section of the Online Student Handbook (see General Information area of the course website) for further information about scheduling and taking online exams and for all exam policies and procedures. You are strongly advised to schedule your exam within the first week of the semester.

### Exam Study Tools

For a list of key concepts that may appear on your exams, refer to the topic outlines available in the Examinations sections of the course website.

Ungraded practice exams are available. They contain questions similar to those that you will see on the graded exams and should serve as an effective way to prepare. In the course website, click on a practice exam link in one of the Examinations sections to begin.

### Exam 1

Exam 1 covers all material assigned in Modules 1–3 of the course and is 2.5 hours (150 minutes) long. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions similar to those on the quizzes.

The exam is a closed-book exam. But you are permitted to use a calculator (scientific, graphing, or financial) but may not use a calculator on a phone, PDA, or any similar device. The use of blank scratch paper for doing math calculations is permitted during online test administrations.

### Exam 2

Exam 2 covers all material assigned in Modules 4–7 of the course and is 2.5 hours (150 minutes) long. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions similar to those on the quizzes.

The exam is a closed-book exam. But you are permitted to use a calculator (scientific, graphing, or financial) but may not use a calculator on a phone, PDA, or any similar device. The use of blank scratch paper for doing math calculations is permitted during online test administrations.

### Exam 3

Exam 3 covers all material assigned in Modules 8–10 of the course and is 2.5 hours (150 minutes) long. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions similar to those on the quizzes.

The exam is a closed-book exam. But you are permitted to use a calculator (scientific, graphing, or financial) but may not use a calculator on a phone, PDA, or any similar device. The use of blank scratch paper for doing math calculations is permitted during online test administrations.

You are on your honor not to cheat during an exam. Cheating means:

• Looking up any answer or part of an answer in an unauthorized textbook or on the Internet, or using any other source to find an answer.
• Copying and pasting or, in any way copying responses or parts of responses from any other source into your exams. This includes but is not limited to copying and pasting from other documents or spreadsheets, whether written by yourself or anyone else.
• Asking anyone else to assist you by whatever means available while you take an exam.
• Copying any part of an exam to share with other students.
• Telling your mentor that you need another attempt at an exam because your connection to the Internet was interrupted when that is not true.

If there is evidence that you have cheated or plagiarized in an exam, the exam will be declared invalid, and you will fail the course.

• Discussion Forums (5)—10 percent
• Written assignments (10)—30 percent
• Quizzes (31)—15 percent
• Exams (3; online, proctored)—45 percent

 A = 93–100 C+ = 78–79 A– = 90–92 C = 73–77 B+ = 88–89 C– = 70–72 B = 83–87 D = 60–69 B– = 80–82 F = Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a course not in your area of study), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings).

# STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESS

### First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

• Read carefully the entire Syllabus, making sure that all aspects of the course are clear to you and that you have all the materials required for the course.

• Take the time to read the entire Online Student Handbook. The Handbook answers many questions about how to proceed through the course, how to schedule exams, and how to get the most from your educational experience at Thomas Edison State University.

• Arrange to take your examination(s) by following the instructions in this Syllabus and the Online Student Handbook.

• Familiarize yourself with the learning management systems environment—how to navigate it and what the various course areas contain. If you know what to expect as you navigate the course, you can better pace yourself and complete the work on time.

• If you are not familiar with web-based learning, be sure to review the processes for posting responses online and submitting activities before class begins.

### Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:

• To stay on track throughout the course, begin each week by consulting the Course Calendar. The Course Calendar provides an overview of the course and indicates due dates for submitting activities, posting discussions, and scheduling and taking examinations.

• Check Announcements regularly for new course information.

Thomas Edison State University is committed to maintaining academic quality, excellence, and honesty. The University expects all members of its community to share the commitment to academic integrity, an essential component of a quality academic experience.

Students at Thomas Edison State University are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

All members of the University community are responsible for reviewing the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the University Catalog and online at www.tesu.edu.

Thomas Edison State University expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the University insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:

• Cheating
• Submitting credentials that are false or altered in any way
• Plagiarizing (including copying and pasting from the Internet without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources)
• Forgery, fabricating information or citations, or falsifying documents
• Submitting the work of another person in whole or in part as your own (including work obtained through document sharing sites, tutoring schools, term paper companies, or other sources)
• Submitting your own previously used assignments without prior permission from the mentor
• Facilitating acts of dishonesty by others (including making tests, papers, and other course assignments available to other students, either directly or through document sharing sites, tutoring schools, term paper companies, or other sources)
• Tampering with the academic work of other students

### Plagiarism

Thomas Edison State University is committed to helping students understand the seriousness of plagiarism, which is defined as using the work and ideas of others without proper citation. The University takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing are subject to discipline under the academic code of conduct policy.

If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > Citing Sources.)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance and similarity report checking, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Report Checking at Turnitin

### Disciplinary Process for Plagiarism

Acts of both intentional and unintentional plagiarism violate the Academic Code of Conduct.

If an incident of plagiarism is an isolated minor oversight or an obvious result of ignorance of proper citation requirements, the mentor may handle the matter as a learning exercise. Appropriate consequences may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool in addition to a lower grade for the assignment or course. The mentor will notify the student and appropriate dean of the consequence by e-mail.

If the plagiarism appears intentional and/or is more than an isolated incident, the mentor will refer the matter to the appropriate dean, who will gather information about the violation(s) from the mentor and student, as necessary. The dean will review the matter and notify the student in writing of the specifics of the charge and the sanction to be imposed.

Possible sanctions include:

• Lower or failing grade for an assignment
• Lower or failing grade for the course
• Rescinding credits
• Rescinding certificates or degrees
• Recording academic sanctions on the transcript
• Suspension from the University
• Dismissal from the University