Math 175: Introduction to cryptology
Instructor: Anton Lukyanenko
Co-instructor: Evangelia Gazaki
Course assistant: Amanda Burcroff
About the Course
How is it that we are able to send information securely online, so that the receiver can read our (say) credit card number easily, but no one else can?
The course answers the question in two ways: through a hands-on exploration of cryptographic methods, starting with the eaerliest known Caesar Cipher used by the Romans; and through a careful study of number theory. We start by asking "what are numbers?" and "how does arithmetic work?" and make our way to the modern RSA algorithm used in everyday online transactions.
Unlike in a traditional class, it is up to students to discover the material. While the instructor and assistants set the pace and goals, it is up to the students to connect all the dots in groups and present their results to the class to reach consensus.