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Daniel Solow Author’s Award

Title and Purpose of the Award

This annual award is to recognize the author or authors of undergraduate mathematics teaching materials (textbook, lecture notes, computer software, web-based learning materials, video lectures, and others, as approved by the Council on Prizes), hereafter referred to as the "materials". The primary criteria for selection will be ... by the material's impact on undergraduate education in mathematics and/or the mathematical sciences (operations research, statistics, computer science, applied mathematics).

The award was proposed and funded by Daniel (Danny) Solow, Professor in the Department of Operations at the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University and long-time member of MAA and approved by the Board of Governors on March 27, 2015. The initial value of the award is $2,500, to be presented annually at MAA MathFest. The award will be made without regard to publisher.


Prof. Solow's motivation for establishing the award comes from his success as the author of undergraduate texts, and in particular his How to Read and Do Proofs, the first text written for an introduction-to-mathematical-proofs course.

Prof. Solow has written 15 research papers on Complex Adaptive Systems, eight papers on Deterministic Optimization, and four papers on Finite Search Procedures in Operations Research and Combinatorial Optimization. He teaches graduate- level courses at Case Western, including the MBA program (Statistics and Decision Modeling), Operations Research (Linear Programming, Nonlinear Programming, and Deterministic Models), Mathematics (Calculus, Graph Theory, Math Foundations for Advanced Studies [proofs and mathematical thinking]), and Computer Science (Computer Programming and Data Structures in C++ with Object- Oriented Programming). Prof. Solow's expertise lies in explaining not only the specific subject I matter of a course, but also the underlying thinking processes involved, as described in the three books he has written, i.e., The Keys to Linear Algebra, The Keys to Advanced Mathematics, and How to Read and Do Proofs.

Guidelines for the Solow Award

  1. Eligible materials, written in English, may come from the mathematical sciences, broadly construed, and be published or developed within fifteen years of the date of submission for the award. "Published" may include self-published or open source, but any materials considered must be available (whether for purchase or not) to any interested individual.
  2. For materials to be considered, the nominators must reference faculty at a minimum of three institutions where the materials have had a positive impact on students during at least the last three years. Recommendations must reference the value of the materials to the students who took the course; in particular, what skills and/or perspectives/attitudes towards the subject matter does the course emphasize and effectively reinforce?
  3. Once accepted, a nomination remains valid for three years. Nominations for updated/revised materials are also accepted except in the case where the authors of those materials have previously received the Solow Award; however, such authors could be considered on the basis of new materials.
  4. Nominations should include:
    • the complete name(s) of the author or authors being recommended
    • complete listing with titles and publication details for the material or materials for which the individuals are being recommended for this award; the committee must be able to access or obtain copies of these materials
    • letter from the nominator that addresses number 2 above
    • a list of at least two other institutions along with contact information (email and telephone number) of a faculty member at each institution who has used the materials and can document the positive impact on undergraduate education in mathematics and/or the mathematical sciences

Nominations should be sent to the MAA secretary at by October 1, 2016.