HISTORY OF MATHEMATICS
Learning outcomes of the course unit
At the end of the course, the student has an overview of mathematical thought with a particular reference to the theory of algebraic equations and to the development of symbolism. Furthermore the course allows students to think over learning difficulties of mathematical concepts and to interpret the “obstacles” epistemological while providing, at the same time, historical tools which can be used as teaching material.
Course contents summary
Ancient civilizations: the Egyptian and Mesopotamian numbering systems and the origins of algebra. Greek mathematics: the numbering system, Euclid and the structure of the Elements (definitions, axioms and common notions), geometricalgebra, Diophantus. The Chinese numbering system and algebra in China and India. Algebra in mathematics Arabic. Methods of false position and abacus treatise. Italian algebraists during the Renaissance (Cardano, Tartaglia, Bombelli, Ferrari), Vietè, Descartes. Tschirhaus and Lagrange’s transforms. From equations algebra to abstract algebra. Gauss, Ruffini, Galois.
Appunti di Storia della Matematica a cura di Daniela Medici
Boyer, C.B., Storia della Matematica, 1980, Mondadori
Kline, M., Storia del pensiero matematico, 1972, Giulio Einaudi Editore
Franci, R., Toti Rigatelli,L, Storia della teoria delle equazioni algebriche, 1979, Mursia
Lessons in whitch sometimes students are supposed to take part in the discussion.
Assessment methods and criteria