You are strongly encouraged to come to office hours, both with me and your TA. You might find the course content office hours most helpful if you have specific questions prepared, but I also welcome you to come and listen to your peers' questions.

In addition to the traditional "course content" office hours, I am also holding "social" office hours for my students to get to know me, their classmates and peers at UCLA, and (occasionally) professional mathematicians. There will often be a topic or reading to guide the conversation.

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Spring 2022 Course Content Office Hours

Course Time Location
Math 32A Office Hours: M 2-3pm MS 6324
Math 32A Office Hours: W 12-1pm MS 6324
Math 32AH Office Hours: F 11am-12pmm MS 6324

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Social Office Hours

Topic Time Location Links and Questions
Introduce yourself! Thursday 4/14, 1-2pm TBD
For this office hour, just come say hi and introduce yourself!
Living Proof - Who/What is a Mathematician? Thursday 5/5, TBD TBD
For this office hour, you will read essays from the AMS/MAA Publication Living Proof. This book is a collection of 41 short essays where mathematicians share their struggles and stories.
  • Foreword
  • 6. An Accidental Mathematician, by Jennifer Quinn
  • 14. A View of Mathematics from Behind the Veil, by Robin Wilson
  • 21. Struggling with the Messaging of Mathematics, by Rachel Weir
  • 41. Should I Quit Mathematics?, by Francis Su

  • Did you find any inspiration or common ground in these essays?
  • Are there any passages that stuck out to you?
  • How would you describe/define “mathematicians”? What words come to mind?
  • How would you describe your personal mathematical identity?
  • What could be a new definition of “mathematician”? What words would you like to come to mind?
  • What causes the differences between the answers to questions 1 and 3?
  • In the Foreword, Stephen Kennedy writes: “There are no ‘math people’, mathematical thinking is a fundamental part of every human’s intellectual capacity. The people we label ‘good at math’ are simply those who have taken the time and trouble to engage the struggle more deeply than others.” What do you think about this statement?
Guest TBD Online, Zoom
Guest TBD
Mathematics for Human Flourishing Thursday 5/26, 1-2pm TBD

For this office hour, you will read the following essay/talk by Francis Su (Harvey Mudd College).

Abstract: Why does the practice of mathematics often fall short of our ideals and hopes? How can the deeply human themes that drive us to do mathematics be channeled to build a more beautiful and just world in which all can truly flourish? I gave this Retiring Presidential Address at the AMS-MAA Joint Winter Meetings on January 6, 2017 at the end of my term as President of the Mathematical Association of America.


  • From reading this essay, was there anything that resonated with you? Was there anything you're interested in learning more about?
  • When have you played with mathematics? Found mathematics beautiful? Thought about truth or justice in mathematics?
  • Why do you do mathematics?
  • Francis writes, "When I was a grad student at Harvard, they had a regular calculus class, an honors calculus class called Math 25, and on top of that, for those with very strong backgrounds, a super honors class called Math 55. Ironically, I regularly encountered students in the honors track who felt they didn’t belong in math, because they hadn’t placed into the super honors track. I had to keep reassuring them “background is not the same as ability." Does this resonate with you?
Guest TBD Online, Zoom
Guest TBD

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Resources

The Student Math Center holds open office hours this semester.

The math department runs the Directed Reading Program (DRP), which is a program that pairs undergraduate students with graduate student mentors to undertake independent projects in mathematics. I highly recommend it, especially if you are interested in pursuing mathematics further.

UCLA has a multitude of groups, resources, and services available to support your academic success, your social belonging, your physical and mental health, and your overall well-being. You can explore these resources here.