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The Art and Craft of Problem Solving, 2nd Edition

The Art and Craft of Problem Solving, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-0-471-78901-7

Aug 2006

384 pages

Select type: Paperback


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A distinctive text that uniquely blends interesting problems with strategies, tools, and techniques to develop the mathematical skill and intuition necessary for problem solving. Students are encouraged to do math rather than just study it. The author draws upon his experience as a coach for the International Mathematics Olympiad to give students an enhanced sense of mathematics and the ability to investigate and solve problems. The book assumes the role of a friendly coach, teaching not just by exposition, but by exhortation, example, and challenge.

The target audience is college math majors, but the book is certainly accessible to advanced high school students and to people reading on their own, especially teachers (at any level). 

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Chapter 1. What This Book is About and How to Read It.

Chapter 2. Strategies for Investigating Problems.

Chapter 3. Tactics for Solving Problems.

Chapter 4. Three Important Crossover Tactics.

Chapter 5. Algebra.

Chapter 6. Combinatorics.

Chapter 7. Number Theory.

Chapter 8. Geometry for Americans.

Chapter 9. Calculus.

References and Further Reading.


  • Paperback! (lower price)
  • New chapter on geometry
  • Revised and expanded calculus chapter with many new problems
  • New examples & exercises
  • More problems, especially "easy" ones in several chapters
"Overall, The Art and Craft of Problem Solving is an excellent gateway to the culture of problem solving. It is challenging and rewarding. Zeitz’s book shines a new light on mathematics and engages readers with its wonderful insights and problems." (Mathematical Association of America 2016)
  • Focuses on problem solving rather than doing exercises using a good collection of interesting, non-routine problems.
  • A multilevel text that is engaging for beginners and math faculty alike.
  • Energetic, precise, and lively writing style that presents mathematical solutions in a clear, straightforward way to expose students to ways of thinking that can lead to results.
  • Structured to first discuss overall strategies and then specifics to allow both the instructor and student to see how to develop a mode of attack and how to apply specific techniques to problems.