Math 180A
Introduction to Probability

Fall 2012

This course is an introduction to the basic ideas and techniques of Probability Theory. (It also serves as a prerequisite for Math 180B and for Math 181A.) The discussion begins with the basic properties of probability spaces, and some elementary combinatorics. We then discuss random variables in a discrete setting, including their means, standard deviations, and distributions. After this, you'll have a chance to exercise your calculus skills when we turn to the story of random variables with continuous distributions, in one and several dimensions. Along the way we encounter two theorems that are fundamental to the subject: the Law of Large Numbers and the Central Limit Theorem.

We shall be using the text PROBABILITY by Jim Pitman. I plan to discuss most of the material contained in chapters 1 through 5 of the text. Time permitting, we may see some of Chapter 6.

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updated September 27, 2012