MATH 123 Finite Mathematics

Course Description and General Course Information

Math 123 satisfies the Quantative Reasoning Requirement passed by the University Undergraduate Council:

Quantitative Reasoning (2 courses): In today's world, arguments and claims often rely for support on scientific studies and statistical evidence. Students should possess the mathematical and quantitative skills to evaluate such evidence. Furthermore, students should possess the skills both to recognize the quantitative dimension of problems and to use mathematical reasoning to formulate and solve the problem. Finally, students need strong quantitative skills because they are indispensable in managing everyday-life situations.

This requirement may be completed by either (1) taking two math or statistics courses from the list that follows, or (2) taking one math course from the list and one course designated in the undergraduate catalog as having a quantitative component (QR). The course designated as having a quantitative component may be within the student's major or an elective.
Math 113, 115, 117, 123, 125, 141, 142, 147, 148, 151, 152, 202, Stat 201, 207.

Course Description & Purpose: M123 is designed to apply systems of linear equations and inequalities to realistic application problems and to explore the mathematics of finance. A major objective is to provide the student with mathematical methods for solving a variety of problems such as: investment analysis, profit and loss analysis, production scheduling, and resource allocations.

Prerequisite(s): Satisfactory placement test score, or pass M119 or M130. Prerequisite requirements are strictly enforced. For students who have recently completed Math 119 or Math 130, it is recommended that they take Math 125 before taking Math 123.

Calculators: A graphing calculator is required for this course.The TI-83+ and TI-84+ models of graphing calculator are needed for the PIVOTA program which is required and can be downloaded to your calculator by the Math Tutorial Center staff. Use of cell phone calculators and calculators with advanced alpha-numeric capabilities such as the TI-89 or NSpire CAS is prohibited. Devices with internet capability are prohibited.

WebAssign: WebAssign is an online homework system that is required for the course. Students should access WebAssign through their Blackboard course site for Math 123. The semester begins with a 14 day free trial period. An Enhanced WebAssign Access Code can be purchased either in the bookstore or online. Students who used WebAssign for Math 123 in the fall of 2012 at UTK do not need to purchase a new access code. For purchasing options and instructions on how to access WebAssign via Blackboard, see the instructional pages just after the Brief Contents page in the custom text or as provided by their instructor.

Audience: The typical student in Math 123 is majoring in one of the following subjects: business, economics, social science, agriculture, architecture, communications, or human ecology (see the Undergraduate Catalog for details). This course will not satisfy the calculus requirement for students who wish to major in mathematics, physical sciences, engineering or computer science.

Topics Include (but are not limited to):  Systems of linear equations and inequalities, matrices, game theory, linear programming using the Simplex method, optimization, and simple interest, compound interest, bonds, and annuities.

Adding/Changing Sections: Instructors cannot add students to a class. All schedule changes must be made through MyUTK.

Note: All students must take the final exam!

Course Coordinator: Cathy Remus (
Mathematics Department, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
This document was last modified 01/13