This course is an introduction to fundamental concepts of graph theory. We study the book
To the extent there is a special emphasis, it is on the structure of graphs, in particular contributions of Tutte, arguably the greatest graph theorist of the last century. (A short biography from Tutte's home university. The New York Times obituary. The London Times obituary.)
The course is not normally suitable for first-year graduate students. However, there are no specific prerequisites except the traditional ``mathematical maturity''. Basic graduate algebra is very helpful.
I use these times for student conferences also, so if you do need to see me in office hours, come by and make sure I see you! (or else I'll never notice).
All students are encouraged to attend the Combinatorics Seminar, usually on Tuesdays, 1:15-2:20. There will be talks you can't understand, as well as some you can't help understanding, on all kinds of topics in graph theory and other combinatorics as well as in number theory (and sometimes both at once). (You'll be surprised how much you learn by not understanding a great many talks.)
I will lecture, for the most part, but with a lot of interaction with you, the students/audience.
Student work: You will have to work hard sometimes to understand the lectures and readings. Keep your colored pencils handy.
Your grade will be based on a combination of handed-in problems, individual conferences, and (later) student presentations. I will also meet with each of you individually on a regular basis.
Try all the exercises at the end of the chapters. You don't have to solve all of them! I will collect your written solutions to some or all of the following assignments, some from Tutte and some from the additional problems below. The list of hand-in problems is not compulsory but you should turn in as many as you can.
See the assignments page.
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