Featured class: Intro to Group Theory

The class

Intro to Group Theory is a fourteen week-long UReddit class that is at the level of a semester long undergraduate course on group theory. Each week includes at least one main lecture video (hosted on YouTube), often along with supplementary videos of either worked examples or on background material the viewer might need, as well as problem and solution sets.

The teacher

“Robert Donley received his doctorate in Mathematics from Stony Brook University and has over a decade of teaching experience at the high school, undergraduate, and graduate levels. He has been cited twice as a Most Influential Professor by his students.”
[source]

In fact, this series of videos constituted a small portion of the over 700 lectures that Dr. Donley has uploaded over the past several years. We would point anyone with the desire for self-study in mathematics in that direction.

Student comments

“This course is absolutely fantastic!

I have a final in Group Theory in 3 weeks, my lecturer’s course follows the topics you explore almost exactly, only it is very algebra heavy and he only explores the general cases without going through examples with us and then expects us to be able to follow through and work out problems. I’ve gone through your entire course as revision and you working through the examples has helped me enormously! Thank you for saving my degree!”
- square13 on Reddit

“I was looking through your youtube channel. It is awesome. Thank you for all the work you put into it.”
- namer98 on Reddit

“Your teaching is very engaging and precise. Thank you!”
- mspivak on Reddit

“I like your style of teaching on the videos. Very clear and concise.”
- tomvatreddit on Reddit

 Commentary

This class is taught by an experienced and dedicated teacher who has devoted quite a lot of time in composing well-executed videos, problem/solution sets, and to response to student questions and comments.

Unfortunately, commenting on Reddit posts is disabled after a couple months, and the YouTube comment system is not well-suited for discussion. Furthermore, there is no systematized way for students to submit their solutions to the given exercises for grading and feedback.

The UReddit team is working on a platform that will offer the functionality to address these comments in full by including a custom Reddit instance that never closes commenting and encourages open discussion, full course management software including a gradebook and live chat with the teacher, and more. We have a prototype of this platform but need a boost from the online community to get it into public beta; if you would like to read more and perhaps help us come to life, please visit our Kickstarter page.

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