Welcome to the Math 103a Homepage!

Modern Algebra I


Instructor: Professor Linda Rothschild; AP&M 7121; phone 534-6454; email: lrothschild@math.ucsd.edu


Office hours: MW: 2:00-3:30 or by appointment  (Note change.)

Teaching Assistant: Nicholas Nguyen; AP&M 6422; email: ndn004@math.ucsd.edu

Office hours :  F: 9-10:30 & 12:30-2:00


Time and place: Lectures are MWF 11:00 - 11:50  Peterson 103

Sections meet on Thursdays: A01 12:00p – 12:50p APM B412

      A02  1:00p  – 1:50p APM B412   


Math 103a is the first quarter of a two-quarter sequence in abstract algebra. The main topic of this quarter is the theory of groups, emphasizing examples and applications.  No previous knowledge of abstract algebra will be assumed, but students will be expected to be able to understand and write basic proofs, as covered in Math 109.    Despite the fact that abstract algebra (either Math 103ab or Math 100ab) is a required sequence for most math majors, we will definitely attempt to have fun!


Final Exam!  Monday, March 19 (next Monday!), 11:30 am – 2:30 pm in Peterson 103.  You may bring one 8 ½ by 11 sheet of paper written both sides.  The final will cover up to and including Chapter 10 of the text.


Course syllabus and references

Text:  Contemporary Abstract Algebra, 7th Edition, by Joseph A. Gallian


Course lecture notes


Course Organization:  As in any math course, “No pain, no gain,” so there will be weekly problems sets (linked below).  There will also be exams:

Midterm 1: Monday, January 30 in class.  You may bring one 8 ½ by 11 sheet of paper written on one side only.

Midterm 2: Monday, February 27 in class.  You may bring one 8 ½ by 11 sheet of paper written on one side only.

Final: Monday, March 19, 11:30 am to 2:30 pm

Grading is based on the following. Homework: 20%, Midterms (2): 40%, Final: 40%

Here is a link to the weekly problem sets currently due.  Solutions to Midterm 2 and Problem Set 7 are now posted (plus a correction to 6).


Should you take Math 103a?