MATHEMATICS FOR SOCIAL SCIENCES

Academic year 2019/2020 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title MATHEMATICS FOR SOCIAL SCIENCES
Course code LT9030 (AF:302484 AR:166684)
Modality On campus classes
ECTS credits 6
Degree level Bachelor's Degree Programme
Educational sector code SECS-S/06
Period 2nd Term
Course year 1
Spazio Moodle Link allo spazio del corso
Contribution of the course to the overall degree programme goals
Mathematical knowledge, and the ability to use it, is one of the most important means of tackling quantitative problems.

The course offers an introduction to essential mathematical concepts and tools which are useful for political and social sciences, including key concepts of calculus in one and more than one variable and of optimization. The course will focus also on Social Choice Theory and we will consider some formal aspects of social choice and their application to democracy.
Expected learning outcomes
The course aims at introducing students to the fundamentals of calculus in one variable. The course begins with the fundamental building blocks of mathematics, then covers essential topics such as derivatives and optimization.
At the end of the course students should have acquired the ability to analyse properties of functions of one variable and the ability to compute derivatives and they should be able to maximize/minimize a quantity described by a one variable function.
Pre-requirements
The course assumes that students have no mathematical background beyond secondary school algebra.
Contents
-Functions, relation and utility
-Voting methods
-Voting paradoxes
-Characterizing voting methods

-Introduction to calculus and the derivative
-Optimization
Referral texts
W.H. Moore, D.A. Siegel A Mathematics Course for Political and Social Research, 2013, Princeton University Press.
During the course other references will be given.
Assessment methods
Grading is based on a final written exam consisting in four questions/exercises. Students are also required to write a short essay about Social Choice.
Teaching methods
Lectures and pratice sessions.
Teaching language
English
Type of exam
written
Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme
04/02/2020