University of Idaho - I Banner
A student works at a computer


U of I's web-based retention and advising tool provides an efficient way to guide and support students on their road to graduation. Login to VandalStar.


Physical Address:
Brink Hall 300

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive, MS 1103
Moscow, ID 83844-1103

Phone: 208-885-6742

Fax: 208-885-5843


Web: Department of Mathematics and Statistical Science

Math 143

Math 143 College Algebra

Math 143 Course Syllabus -Spring 2022

Please carefully read the requirements for this course. 


Note: All time references listed in this syllabus are Pacific Time Zone time references.

The primary purpose of College Algebra is to improve your skills and competency in algebra so that you will be successful in calculus, the other math courses required for your major, and in the courses that use mathematics. Another goal is to help you develop your mathematical learning skills so that you will be more confident in future mathematical courses.

After completing Math 143, the student should be able to:

  • Solve linear equations, quadratic equations, equations that are quadratic in form, rational equations, exponential equations, and logarithmic equations [Learn and Integrate, Clarify Purpose and Perspective]
  • Solve polynomial and rational inequalities [Learn and Integrate, Communicate]
  • Determine the domain of polynomial functions, rational functions, root functions, exponential functions, and logarithmic functions [Learn and Integrate, Clarify Purpose and Perspective]
  • Understand the concept of composite functions, one-to-one functions, and inverse functions [Learn and Integrate, Think and Create, Clarify Purpose and Perspective]
  • Use synthetic division, the remainder theorem, the factor theorem, the fundamental theorem of algebra, and the intermediate value theorem to determine the zeros of polynomial functions [Think and Create, Learn and Integrate, Communicate]
  • Sketch the graphs of basic functions using transformations including polynomial functions, root functions, absolute value functions, rational functions, exponential functions and logarithmic functions [Think and Create, Communicate

MATH 143 SPRING 2022 COURSE NOTEBOOK: Must be purchased at the U of I Bookstore. Students will be required to bring this course notebook to class and to the Polya Mathematics Center.

Pearson MyLabs Account (through Inclusive Access): Students must opt into the MML Courseware to complete the course. See the “How to get started” instructions for details.

  • You MUST enter your full email address as both your email address and your username when you register your Pearson MyLabs account.
  • You MUST write your Pearson MyLabs password down in a safe place where you can retrieve it.

STUDENT COMPUTER ACCOUNT: All students need a computer account. If you need help with your login information, go to University ITS.

VANDAL CARD: You will need your Vandal card to take an exam in the Polya Math Center and to earn “Polya Minutes” which are described in detail below.

HEADPHONES: Headphones are needed to listen to the video lectures at the computers.

TI 30xIIS CALCULATOR: You will need this calculator to work on some problems from the assignments, quizzes and/or tests. The TI 30-X IIS calculator is THE ONLY CALCULATOR allowed when testing. You must have your own calculator. Note the II is the Roman numeral 2.

In-Class Notebook Assessment/Participation: Max 44 points 

(4 points per class meeting; one class meeting dropped)

  • There will be a notebook assessment each non-test week in class. You will be asked to turn in specific pages of your notebook or you will participate in another in-class activity as determined by your instructor. Make sure to bring your notebook to class. The notebook assessments are worth 4 points. The work that you submit must be completely filled out and correct to earn your 4 points. The only possible scores are 0 or 4 points.
  • Notebook pages must be completely filled out prior to the beginning of class. All appropriate work must be shown to obtain credit.
  • You must turn in only your own notebook pages. You cannot have another student turn them in if you are absent. Only pages from the Spring 2022 notebook will be accepted.
  • If you arrive to class after the notebook assessments have been collected, then you will not be allowed to turn them in, and you will receive 0 points for the notebook assessment for the week.
  • Note that it usually takes up to three business days for Notebook scores to be posted. If your class meets on a Friday, the scores may not be posted until the following Wednesday.
  • Grade sheets are included in your notebook for each week of the semester. You may be asked to submit the information or the page of grade calculations for any given week (except week 1) as part of the notebook assessment for that week.

Polya Lab Attendance: Max 40 points

(See the page immediately following the syllabus for more details) (4 points per week; one week dropped)

  • Students will earn 4 points/week for attending the Polya Mathematics Center for at least 150 minutes (Note: 149 minutes = 0 points).
  • Students must only use Polya Computers while attending the lab. Students are not allowed to use their own laptops, tablets, phones, or any other devices while attending the Polya lab.
  • Students who are not working on mathematics while attending the Polya Mathematics Center may be asked to leave and will automatically receive 0 points for the week.
  • Students who are on their phones while attending the Polya Lab will be asked to leave and will receive 0 points for the week. Students who need to use their phones must scan out of the Polya Lab and use their phone outside.

Homework: 100 points 

(There are 22 homework assignments; (Two assignments every non-test week; four will be dropped)

  • Students will earn up to 5 points for every homework assignment.
  • There will be two homework assignments in MyLabs every non-test week.
  • Homework extensions will only be given for students with a valid excuse (see Section 9 below). 

Homework Due Dates

If your class meets on Wednesday:

HW A is due Saturday after class at 11:59 PM.
HW B is due Tuesday before the next class at 11:59 PM.

If your class meets on Thursday:

HW A is due Sunday after class at 11:59 PM.
HW B is due Wednesday before the next class at 11:59 PM.

If your class meets on Friday:

HW A is due Monday after class at 11:59 PM.
HW B is due Thursday before the next class at 11:59 PM.

  • If a student does not meet the HW A deadline, then students may continue to work on the HW A assignment. However, a 10% penalty will be assessed for all homework A problems that are submitted late. Assignments cannot be submitted after the HW B due date.
  • There may be prerequisite questions about course policies and procedures associated with assignments. Prerequisite questions must be answered to access graded work.

Quizzes: 100 points 

(There are 11 quizzes; two will be dropped)

  • Students will earn up to 10 points for every quiz. There will be a quiz in MyLabs every non-test week, due the night of the student’s class meeting.
  • Quizzes may be worked up to 10 times; only the highest score will count.
  • Quizzes are due at 11:59 PM on the evening of your class meeting. (One day after HW is due.)
  • Quiz extensions will only be given for students with a valid excuse (see Section 9 below).

Tests:300 points

(3 tests worth 100 points each)

  • There will be three tests throughout the semester, each worth 100 points. The last day to take a computer test will be the day BEFORE the student’s class meeting.
  • The computer portion of each test will be proctored in the Polya Lab; written tests will take place in class. You must have a valid Vandal card or government-issued photo ID to test in the Polya Lab. If you do not bring a photo ID to your written test, then you must bring an approved photo ID and take the make-up written test in the Polya Lab by closing time on the day of the in-class written test. There will be a 10-point penalty. If you do not take the make-up written test as described above, then the written test grade will be recorded as a zero. Note that if you hand in a written test without a valid photo ID, then you will receive a zero on your written test.
  • Students must receive at least 25% on the corresponding practice test before their first attempt on each test.
  • Students will have the opportunity to take each computer test up to 3 times with only the highest score counting toward the test grade. Students may only take one test per calendar day. If a student takes more than one test per day, then only the lowest test score for that day will count.
  • Each test has two parts: a computer portion which is taken in the Polya Lab, and a written portion which is taken during your class meeting. Tests are worth 100 points, which are calculated as: 80% of the best computer score + the written score. For example, suppose you took the computer portion of Test 1 three times and received a 60, 75, and 89 out of 100. You then took your written test and received a 19 out of 20. Your total point score for Test 1 would be 0.8*89+19, or 90.2.
  • Early written tests must be requested by email through Polya Web at least 24 hours or one business day (whichever is greater) before you wish to take the test. Your instructor will determine whether you are eligible to take an early test.
  • Makeup tests will only be given for students with a valid excuse (see Section 9 below).

Final Exam: 150 points

  • There will be one comprehensive final exam worth 150 points.
  • The final is closed book and closed notes.
  • The final exam will be Tuesday, May 10 at 7:00 PM. The location of the final exam will be announced during class. Students who do not take the final exam will receive an “F” in the course.
  • Students should not make travel arrangements until after the last day of Finals Week.

Total: 734 points

Grade Component Points for Each Number  Total Possible  Notes
 Homework  5  22  100  Lowest 2 Dropped
 Quiz  10  11  100  Lowest 1 Dropped
 Notebook Assessment  4  12  44  Lowest 1 Dropped
 Polya Time  4  11  40  Lowest 1 Dropped
 Test  100  3  300  
 Final  150  1  150  
 Total Points for Course      734  

Students have the opportunity to earn up to 10 points of extra credit: All students are allowed access to this Extra Credit Assignment. The Extra Credit Assignment will be due on Friday of the last day of the semester prior to Finals Week.

You should check your in-class notebook scores and Polya time commitment on the course web page each week to verify that they are correct.

Your course grade will be based on the total number of points that you have earned as follows:

661 points guarantees an A
588 points guarantees a B
514 points guarantees a C
440 points guarantees a D

When adding up your points, remember to drop your lowest non-test scores!

In most three credit college courses the average student spends 9 to 12 hours per week to be successful in the course.  In traditional courses, students spend 3 hours in a lecture and 6 or more hours working alone, usually doing homework assignments and studying.  In this course, you will spend one hour in a classroom setting (attending a class meeting), and as much time as you need participating in Polya activities per week.  We require that 2.5 of those additional hours be spent with us in the Polya Center where some of our best resources are available to you, but you are always welcome to spend more—many of our students report that they like to spend all their math time in the Polya Center where tutors are available.  You will receive credit toward your final grade for conscientiously attending class and putting in the 2.5 hours a week in the Polya Center.  Most successful Polya students report spending between 6 and 9 hours a week on math but this varies a great deal by student.

Computer Lab

Monday – Thursday 9:30 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Friday 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Saturday 12 - 5 p.m.
Sunday 12 - 8 p.m.

Testing Available

Monday – Thursday 10 a.m. - 9 p.m.*
Friday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.*
Saturday 12:30 - 5 p.m.*
Sunday 12:30 - 8 p.m.*
(*Latest start times 90 minutes prior to closing to guarantee test completion. Best testing times are in the morning to ensure a computer.)

Review Sessions

There are 9 review sessions given each week. See the white board in the Polya Center or the review session schedule for times and locations.

Announcements about the course, special sessions, changes in schedules or procedures, and so forth, will be made in your class, on the Polya web page and by e-mail. You are expected to check your University e-mail regularly.

The best way to communicate with your teacher is to speak to them in person during their office hours or when they are working in the Polya Lab. Office hours will be posted once the semester begins.

All emails must be sent through the email form located at: . Any emails sent without using this form will not be read.

All emails must follow standard grammar and punctuation rules. Any email which fails to adhere to these standards will be returned to you for revision. Emails should also follow basic email etiquette. Any emails that violate the student code of conduct regarding respect of others will be sent to the Dean of Students as appropriate.

Polya students are expected to maintain Academic Honesty in all their work. Collaboration is encouraged on many assignments such as homework, and tutors are available to assist you with this kind of work. However, your teacher may assign other work or quizzes that should be completed independently. Copying another student’s work on any assignment, homework or quiz is considered cheating. All tests and the final exam are considered individual work and must be completed without unauthorized assistance of any kind, including the help of other students, tutors, notes, or any calculator other than the TI 30xIIS. All test materials and scratch paper are to be turned in with the test paper and attempting to bring test work out of the testing area and/or share that work with other students is considered cheating.

The University of Idaho has defined acceptable behavior in the Student Code of Conduct Article II.A-1 – Academic Dishonesty [rev. 7-98, 7-05, 7-14, ed. 7-09]. The following summarizes relevant points related to your math course:

  • Because academic honesty and integrity are core values at a university, the faculty finds that even one incident of academic dishonesty may merit expulsion.
  • Cheating on classroom or outside assignments, examinations, or tests is a violation of this code. Falsifying Polya scan records is a violation of this code.
  • Plagiarism, falsification of academic records, falsification of records and the acquisition or use of test materials without faculty authorization are considered forms of academic dishonesty and, as such, are violations of this code.
  • Instructors and students are responsible for maintaining academic standards and integrity in their classes. Consequences for academic dishonesty may be imposed by the course instructor. Such consequences may include but cannot exceed a grade of "F" in the course.

(The full text of the Student Code of Conduct may be found at )

Make up work for assignments missed because of absence will not be allowed unless an arrangement with the instructor is made prior to the absence, or in cases of medical or family emergency. It is the student’s responsibility to communicate with their instructor about the absence and arrangements for completing missing work.

Field trips and official student travel require preparation and notification in advance of departure. See the catalog for details.

Problems with your personal computer or internet connection are not grounds for an extension. When using a personal computer, it is highly recommended to use Firefox or Chrome as your browser.

We are committed to accommodate students with special needs. Reasonable accommodations are available for students who have documented temporary or permanent disabilities. All accommodations must be approved through the Center for Disability Access and Resources (CDAR) located in the Pitman Center Room 127 in order to notify your instructor(s) as soon as possible regarding accommodation(s) needed for the course. Contact information:

Student Resources: The University of Idaho provides student support to ensure a successful learning experience. Please see the Student Resources Webpage (

The Office of Equity and Diversity engages in social justice advocacy through policy implementation, programs and services that promote access and inclusion for cultural and diverse populations. We collaborate with stakeholders to develop an intentional, culturally literate and responsive community founded on respect for the individual and the collective. We are committed to ensuring bias-free, safe spaces for our entire Vandal family, to achieve our University’s mission of focused and inclusive excellence.

Phone: 208-885-2468

Counseling and Testing Center: The Counseling & Testing Center’s (CTC) staff of full-time psychologists and supervised graduate intern and practicum students offers students, faculty and staff access to a wide range of counseling services, resources and referrals.

Phone: 208-885-6717

University of Idaho Classroom Learning Civility Clause:
In any environment in which people gather to learn, it is essential that all members feel as free and safe as possible in their participation. To this end, it is expected that everyone in this course will be treated with mutual respect and civility, with an understanding that all of us (students, instructors, professors, guests, and teaching assistants) will be respectful and civil to one another in discussion, in action, in teaching, and in learning.

Should you feel our classroom interactions do not reflect an environment of civility and respect, you are encouraged to meet with your instructor during office hours to discuss your concern. Additional resources for expression of concern or requesting support include the Dean of Students office and staff (5-6757), the UI Counseling & Testing Center’s confidential services (5-6716), or the UI Office of Human Rights, Access, & Inclusion (5-4285).

  • Purchase notebook on or before the first day of class
  • Opt into Inclusive Access on or before the first day of class (You will receive a notice when your Canvas course is available, and you will be able to opt into Inclusive Access at that time.)
  • Complete every page of the notebook
  • Complete homework as outlined in the course calendar
  • Check your University of Idaho email at least one time every day
  • Be on time and prepared for class and pay attention for the entire class period
  • Bring the course notebook to class, with appropriate pages completed for the day
  • Accurately complete notebook materials
  • Attend the Polya Mathematics Center for 150 minutes (2 ½ hours) each week
  • Take each computerized test three times (or until at least 90% is achieved on one of the attempts)
  • Take each written test during the designated course period
  • Keep track of my grades by using the grade summary sheets in this notebook
  • Maintain Academic Honesty in all my work
  • Fill out grade sheet at the beginning of each week

  • Be on time and prepared for class
  • Be prepared to present upcoming material and answer student questions
  • Respond to emails during business hours (Note: It may take more than one day to research and respond to an email. I will check my email at least once during each business day.)
  • Establish office and Polya hours
  • Be available during designated office and Polya hours
  • Grade notebooks and make them available for student pickup (may not be available immediately)
  • Help students with math in the Polya Center

U of I Moscow is located on the homelands of the Nimiipu (Nez Perce). We extend gratitude to the indigenous people that call this place home, since time immemorial. U of I recognizes that it is our academic responsibility to build relationships with the indigenous people to ensure integrity of tribal voices.


Physical Address:
Brink Hall 300

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive, MS 1103
Moscow, ID 83844-1103

Phone: 208-885-6742

Fax: 208-885-5843


Web: Department of Mathematics and Statistical Science