Math 108
Winter 2015

Home Course Schedule Syllabus

Course Description

Math 108 serves as an introduction to combinatorics, with a focus on graph theory and enumerative combinatorics. The syllabus can be found here, and a more detailed breakdown of the schedule and homework can be found at the Course Schedule page.


  • Dr. Robert J. Lemke Oliver
    Office: 380-383A
    Email: rjlo(at)stanford(dot)edu
    Office Hours: MW 4-5, R 3-4

  • David Montague
    (Course Assistant)
    Office: 380-381A
    Email: davmont(at)math(dot)stanford(dot)edu
    Office Hours: T 10-2


A Course in Combinatorics, Second Edition, by van Lint and Wilson. Many homework exercises and reading assignments are taken from the book, so you should have a copy. For your convenience the textbook is available for purchase at the Stanford bookstore. However, this is a pretty standard textbook and you might be able to buy it elsewhere new or used for a lower price.

It is possible that additional, supplementary material will be used during the quarter. Check back later.


Your grade will be based on the following components:

  • Homework: 30%
  • Midterm Exam: 30%
  • Final Exam: 40%

There are no predetermined numerical cutoffs for letter grades.

Throughout the quarter your grades will be posted on CourseWork. It is your responsibility to periodically check that there have been no errors entering your scores into the system.


There will be weekly homework posted on the Course Schedule page. Your solutions to the assigned homework will be graded and returned to you. Your work on the assigned problem will be graded on clarity of exposition as well as correctness.

Homework will be due every week on Wednesday at the beginning of class. We will drop your lowest homework score from your total score at the end of the quarter when computing your final grade. Late homework will be accepted only under very exceptional circumstances; the purpose of the dropped homework score is exactly to account for the less exceptional circumstances when you are unable to hand in your homework on time.

Your homework must be stapled and have your full name. Otherwise, you will receive a score of zero on this homework. This is a firm policy; no amount of complaining or arguing will give you back your points.


There will be one in-class midterm exam and a university scheduled final exam. Most of the problems on the exams will be similar to the problems in the weekly homework, but there will always one or two harder problems. All exams for Math 108 this quarter are closed-book, closed-notes, with no calculators or other electronic aids permitted. Individual exams will be neither curved nor scaled.

The exam dates are given below; it is your responsibility to verify right now that you can attend class on these days. Please contact your instructor as soon as possible if you will not be able to attend one of the midterms. In any case, if you need to reschedule the exam you must do so no later than two weeks before the exam. The final exam cannot be rescheduled, per university policy.

If an emergency occurs and you need to miss an exam, contact your instructor as soon as possible.

  • Midterm: Friday, February 6, in class
  • Final exam: Friday, March 20, 8:30am - 11:30am.

Other important policies

  • Extra credit assignments: Occasionally students ask for extra credit in order to improve their grade. While we can recommend additional practice problems, we cannot offer them for credit as it would be unfair to the entire class if only a small number of students were allowed a chance to improve their grade. If you become worried about your understanding and grade in the course, please see your instructor as soon as possible for advice.
  • Handing in other student's papers: Sometimes it is necessary to have a friend hand in a homework assignment for you. Please note however that if your friend forgets, hands in the paper late or in the wrong location, then the late assignment cannot be accepted.
  • Calculator policy: Calculators are not allowed or needed on any of the exams. They will not be necessary for the homework, but students are welcome to use them if they so desire.
  • Honor code policy: By Math Department policy, any student found to be in violation of the Honor Code on any assignment or exam in this course will receive a final course letter grade of NP.

Winter 2015-- Department of Mathematics, Stanford University
Problems with this page? Contact Dr. Lemke Oliver so we can fix the problem.

(Page stolen from Christelle, who stole it from Rob, who stole it from Eric, who stole from Math 41. Thanks to anybody who ever had anything to do with this page!)