FSU Offers New Online Calculus I Course in Fall 2014
The new online Calculus I (MAC 2311) and Calculus II (MAC 2312) courses are an alternative to the traditional class room lecture courses. The online courses cover the same materials, and yield the same credits as the traditional courses. Calculus I is offered this fall, Calculus II next spring.
Alumni Profile: Mike Kirby
While journeying through his career, Kirby says that his favorite part was the experience of teaching and mentoring PhD students at Cambridge in England while on sabbatical. There he recognized a difference in PhD students, saying, "what distinguishes a PhD student is that they can learn anything on their own, but it's interesting to see a PhD student go back to undergrad material with new understanding."
Mariel Vazquez Alumni Profile
Mariel Vazquez, who earned her Ph.D. in math at FSU, has received a prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award for her research. She applies pure math to the biological mysteries of DNA, studying its entanglement as it packs tightly into living cells. Born and raised in Mexico City, Vazquez became fascinated with math and biology in high school. "I found pure mathematics to be absolutely beautiful but I didn't know how I could apply it to biology," Vazquez said. That changed when she became an undergraduate at the National Autono- mous University of Mexico and attended a series of talks about DNA topology - the application of knot theory to the study of DNA.
Faculty Research: Mike Mesterton-Gibbons
Among questions of interest to biologists who study animal behavior are these: When should an animal - for example, a fiddler crab - intervene to help a neighbor having a territorial dispute with an intruder? Does eavesdropping - for example, by green swordtail fish - increase or reduce the overall frequency of aggressive behavior in a population? How widespread in nature is mutual assessment of fighting abilities? To be sure, humans do it, but what about hermit crabs or sea anenomes? And if strength is indeed being assessed, when does it pay for a threat to be a bluff?
Faculty Profile: Phil Bowers, Professor of Mathematics
After serving as Associate Chair from August 1999 to August 2005, and as Chair from August 2005 to August 2012, Dr. Phil Bowers said he has a new appreciation for the work administrators do. Although he looks forward to getting back to his research and writing, his years spent as Chair were valuable, both to him and to the department. Even as he faced challenges such as budget concerns, Bowers was able to see many of his goals realized during his two terms as Chair.