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The Probability Lifesaver:
All the Tools You Need to Understand Chance
Steven J. Miller

Paperback | 2017 | $29.95 | £24.95 | ISBN: 9780691149554
Hardcover | 2017 | $99.50 | £83.95 | ISBN: 9780691149547
752 pp. | 7 x 10 | 8 color illus. 64 line illus. 21 tables.
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eBook | ISBN: 9781400885381 |
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Chapter 1[PDF] pdf-icon | Table of Contents [PDF] pdf-icon | How to Use This Book [PDF] pdf-icon

Supplemental Materials

The essential lifesaver for students who want to master probability

For students learning probability, its numerous applications, techniques, and methods can seem intimidating and overwhelming. That's where The Probability Lifesaver steps in. Designed to serve as a complete stand-alone introduction to the subject or as a supplement for a course, this accessible and user-friendly study guide helps students comfortably navigate probability's terrain and achieve positive results.

The Probability Lifesaver is based on a successful course that Steven Miller has taught at Brown University, Mount Holyoke College, and Williams College. With a relaxed and informal style, Miller presents the math with thorough reviews of prerequisite materials, worked-out problems of varying difficulty, and proofs. He explores a topic first to build intuition, and only after that does he dive into technical details. Coverage of topics is comprehensive, and materials are repeated for reinforcement—both in the guide and on the book's website. An appendix goes over proof techniques, and video lectures of the course are available online. Students using this book should have some familiarity with algebra and precalculus.

The Probability Lifesaver not only enables students to survive probability but also to achieve mastery of the subject for use in future courses.

  • A helpful introduction to probability or a perfect supplement for a course
  • Numerous worked-out examples
  • Lectures based on the chapters are available free online
  • Intuition of problems emphasized first, then technical proofs given
  • Appendixes review proof techniques
  • Relaxed, conversational approach

Steven J. Miller is associate professor of mathematics at Williams College. He is the coauthor of An Invitation to Modern Number Theory (Princeton) and The Mathematics of Encryption: An Elementary Introduction and the editor of Benford's Law: Theory and Applications (Princeton).


"This is a superb book by a gifted writer and mathematician. Miller's amiable, intuitive writing style weaves stories about probability into the narrative in a unique fashion."--Larry Leemis, College of William & Mary

"The Probability Lifesaver creates a wonderful mathematical experience. It combines important theories with fun problems, giving a new and creative perspective on probability. This book helped me understand the big questions behind the mathematics of probability: why the complex theories I was learning are true, where they come from, and what are their applications. This approach is a welcome complement to other heavy theoretical books, and was detailed and expansive enough to serve as the main textbook for our class."--Alexandre Gueganic, Williams College ‘19

"This fun book gives readers the feeling that they are having a live conversation with the author. A wonderful resource for students and teachers alike, The Probability Lifesaver contains clear and detailed explanations, problems with solutions on every topic, and extremely helpful background material."--Iddo Ben-Ari, University of Connecticut

"In The Probability Lifesaver, Miller does more than simply present the theoretical framework of probability. He takes complex concepts and describes them in understandable language, provides realistic applications that highlight the far-extending reaches of probability, and engages the problem-solving intuitions that lie at the heart of mathematics. Lastly, and most importantly, I am reminded throughout this textbook of why I chose to study mathematics: because it’s fun!"--Michael Stone, Williams College ‘16

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    File created: 7/11/2017

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