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MATH272 Discrete Mathematics

Graph theory and algorithms; combinatorial counting techniques; sets, relations, modular arithmetic and applications to cryptography. There will be an emphasis on both proof techniques and practical algorithms.

Paper title Discrete Mathematics
Paper code MATH272
Subject Mathematics
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $904.05
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,954.75

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MATH 170 or 103
Schedule C
Arts and Music, Science
This paper should be of interest to three main groups:
  • The first covers anyone who has ever had an interest in puzzles of a mathematical nature. This is because the topics of the paper frequently come very close to the concepts often used in such puzzles.
  • The second group is Computer Science students. Discrete mathematics ideas are useful in computer science, especially where algorithms and computability are concerned.
  • Finally, the paper should be of interest to Mathematics majors and honours students. It provides a good foundation for other papers, both as background and in exposure to proof techniques.
Teaching staff
Professor Robert Aldred
Paper Structure
Main topics from:
  • Basic counting, inclusion-exclusion
  • Logical equivalence, rules of inference
  • Introduction to graph theory
  • Set theory
  • Congruences and elementary number theory
  • Cryptography
Teaching Arrangements
Five lectures per fortnight and one weekly tutorial
Required text: Discrete and Combinatorial Mathematics 5th edition by Ralph P. Grimaldi

Useful references: A First Look At Graph Theory, J Clark and D A Holton, World Scientific (1996)
Course outline
View course outline for MATH 272
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
communication, critical thinking.
view more information about otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students will learn how to formulate and test rigorous discrete mathematical concepts.

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Second Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
L1 Monday 16:00-16:50 28-34, 36-41
Wednesday 16:00-16:50 28-34, 36-41
Thursday 16:00-16:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
T1 Tuesday 14:00-14:50 29-34, 36-41