Professor:  Dr. Robert P. Webber

Office and hours:  Ruffner 332.  MF, 2:00 - 3:00; T, 1:30 - 3:00; and by appointment or coincidence. I am not normally on campus on Thursday.

Telephone and email:  395-2192;

Course description:  An introductory course designed to acquaint the student with applications of mathematics in the life of the consumer.  Special attention will be given to the algebraic derivation of formulas, the reduction of real life situations to mathematical models, and the mathematics employed in banking, credit, taxes, insurance, installment buying, and annuities.

Text:   Biehler, The Mathematics of Money 2/eLulu, 2010.

Calculator:  You will need a calculator. The TI-30 or better is highly recommended for this class. It is your responsibility to know how to use your calculator.  Bring it to class each day. I will assume you have it for group work, quizzes and tests.

Course objectives:  The student will

  1. be able to do calculations involving decimals and percents quickly and accurately;
  2. be able to set up and solve word problems involving the rate * base = percentage equation and its applications;
  3. be able to use formulas and technology to calculate simple and compound interest, present value, annuities, and periodic payments;
  4. understand of the meaning of annual percentage rate and annual percentage yield.

Grades:  Your course grade will be determined as follows.

        3 tests, 1 composite quiz grade ...drop lowest of these 4 ......... 48% of the final grade
        Class participation (group work) ............................................ 15% of the final grade
        Writing assignment(s) ............................................................. 15% of the final grade
        Final exam ............................................................................. 22% of the final grade

90-100, A; 80-90, B; 70 - 80, C; 60 - 70, D; below 60, F. Plus and minus grades will ordinarily be given for grades in the upper 2 and lower 2 points, respectively, of each range.

Homework:  Homework is assigned regularly, and everyone is expected to do it.  Homework will not be collected without warning, and it is your responsibility to do the assigned problems.  Feel free to work with others on homework, and ask me about problems you cannot solve.

Quizzes:  Given frequently (but not every day), quizzes are given at the start of the period.  They are intended to see if you have read the material and done the simple exercises.  Quizzes are always short, and they are open book and notes.  Often they will be taken directly from the homework.  Quizzes that are missed for any reason cannot be made up.  You may miss one quiz without penalty, but you will be assigned a grade of  0  for any additional quizzes that you miss.

Class participation:  Often you will be asked to work in groups in class.  Working in small groups of three or four, you will be asked to solve a problem and present your results to the class.  Missed class participation sessions cannot be made up, but you will be allowed one absence from a class participation session without penalty.  You will receive a grade of  0  for each additional missed session.

Writing assignments:  As a general education course, Math 114 will require more writing than in some non-general education mathematics courses.  There will be at least one writing assignment in this course.  Writing assignments will be graded both for mathematical correctness and for writing style.  More details and a grading rubric will be provided with the assignments.

Attendance:  Your attendance is expected at all classes.  Makeup tests will be given reluctantly, and then only upon presentation of a doctor's excuse.  Makeup test are always more difficult than regular tests, regardless of the reason for absence.  You may not make up missed class participation sessions nor quizzes.

Do not leave in the middle of a class, even to get a drink of water or to answer your cell phone.  Students who leave in the middle of class for any reason disrupt the class and break the teacher's concentration.

Honor code:  I subscribe to the Longwood University honor system, which, among other things, assumes you do not cheat and that you take responsibility for seeing that others do not.  Infractions will be dealt with harshly.  A student who is convicted of an Honor Code offense involving this class will receive a course grade of F, in addition to any penalties imposed by the Honor Board.

Tentative schedule: 





Aug 22 26

1.1, 1.2: Decimals, percents, I = Prt


Aug 29 Sep 2

1.3, 2.1: I = Prt, ordinary vs. exact time, discount



Labor Day September 5 no classes


Sep 7 9

2.2, 3.1: Discount, compound interest


Sep 12 16

3.2: compound interest, review, TEST


Sep 19 23

3.3, 3.4, notes: Effective rate, progressions


Sep 26 30

Notes, 4.1, 4.2: Progressions, future value of annuity


Oct 3 7

4.3, 4.4: Sinking funds, present value



Fall Break October 10 - 11


Oct 12 14

Review, TEST


Oct 17 21

4.5, 5.1: Amortization tables, spreadsheets


Oct 24 28

5.2 5.4: Spreadsheets


Oct 31 Nov 4

9.1, 9.2: Markup, markdown


Nov 7 11

Catch up, review, TEST


Nov 14 18

Notes: Auto insurance


Nov 21

10.1: Credit cards



Thanksgiving break November 23 25


Nov 28 Dec 2

14.3: Leasing; review


Fri Dec 9

3:00 5:30 p.m.