Course Department:

Mathematics

Course Frequency:

Alternate years

Course Description:

Elementary number theory is concerned with properties of numbers (integers, primes, etc.) as well as patterns and relationships among certain sets of numbers. Topics will include divisibility, congruences, special types of primes, the distribution of primes throughout the integers, number-theoretic functions, quadratic residues, and continued fractions. Further study may include the RSA code, a superior encryption algorithm based on elementary number theory, and a discussion of one of the most famous problems in mathematics — Fermat’s Last Theorem — conjectured in 1630 yet unsolved until the 1990s. Prerequisites: Mathematics 242 and 244. Breadth area: Algebra. One unit.

Course Number:

353