Cover image for Combinatorics : a problem oriented approach
Combinatorics : a problem oriented approach
Marcus, Daniel A., 1945-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Washington, DC : Mathematical Association of America, [1998]

Physical Description:
x, 136 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm.
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QA164 .M345 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



The format of this book is unique in that it combines features of a traditional text with those of a problem book. The material is presented through a series of problems, about 250 in all, with connecting text; this is supplemented by 250 additional problems suitable for homework assignment. The problems are structured in order to introduce concepts in a logical order and in a thought-provoking way. The first four sections of the book deal with basic combinatorial entities; the last four cover special counting methods. Many applications to probability are included along the way. Students from a wide range of backgrounds-mathematics, computer science, or engineering-will appreciate this appealing introduction.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Marcus (mathematics, California State Polytechnic Univ., Pomona) intends his book for use by junior-level combinatorics students. Unlike other books on the subject such as Alan Tucker's Applied Combinatorics (3rd ed., 1994), this one is largely a sequenced collection of problems, with very little exposition. The book contains roughly 500 problems, ranging in difficulty from easy to moderately difficult. Numerical answers are provided for many of the problems, but the author does not provide complete solutions. A table showing the dependencies between problems is also included. Topics treated in the book include sequences and strings, combinations, partitions, recurrence relations, generating functions, and the Polya-Redfield method. Upper-division undergraduates; graduates. B. Borchers; New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

Table of Contents

Part I The Basics
1 Strings
2 Combinations
3 Distributions
4 Partitions
Part II Special Counting Methods
5 Inclusion and exclusion
6 Recurrence relations
7 Generating functions
8 The Polyß-Redfield method