CLEARLY:

I don’t want to write down all the “in- between” steps.

TRIVIAL:

If I have to show you how to do this, you’re in the wrong class.

OBVIOUSLY:

I hope you weren’t sleeping when we discussed this earlier, because I refuse to repeat it.

RECALL:

I shouldn’t have to tell you this, but for those of you who erase your memory tapes after every test…

WLOG (Without Loss Of Generality):

I’m not about to do all the possible cases, so I’ll do one and let you figure out the rest.

IT CAN EASILY BE SHOWN:

Even you, in your finite wisdom, should be able to prove this without me holding your hand.

CHECK or CHECK FOR YOURSELF:

This is the boring part of the proof, so you can do it on your own time.

SKETCH OF A PROOF:

I couldn’t verify all the details, so I’ll break it down into the parts I couldn’t prove.

HINT:

The hardest of several possible ways to do a proof.

BRUTE FORCE:

Four special cases, three counting arguments, two long inductions, “and a partridge in a pair tree.”

SOFT PROOF:

One third less filling (of the page) than your regular proof, but it

requires two extra years of course work just to understand the terms.

ELEGANT PROOF:

Requires no previous knowledge of the subject matter and is less than ten lines long.

SIMILARLY:

At least one line of the proof of this case is the same as before.

CANONICAL FORM:

4 out of 5 mathematicians surveyed recommended this as the final form for their students who choose to finish.

TFAE (The Following Are Equivalent):

If I say this it means that, and if I say that it means the other thing, and if I say the other thing…

BY A PREVIOUS THEOREM:

I don’t remember how it goes (come to think of it I’m not really sure

we did this at all), but if I stated it right (or at all), then the

rest of this follows.

TWO LINE PROOF:

I’ll leave out everything but the conclusion, you can’t question ’em if you can’t see ’em.

BRIEFLY:

I’m running out of time, so I’ll just write and talk faster.

LET’S TALK THROUGH IT:

I don’t want to write it on the board lest I make a mistake.

PROCEED FORMALLY:

Manipulate symbols by the rules without any hint of their true meaning (popular in pure math courses).

QUANTIFY:

I can’t find anything wrong with your proof except that it won’t work if x is a moon of Jupiter.

PROOF OMITTED:

Trust me, It’s true.

## Dictionary of Definitions of Terms Used in Math Lectures

Posted by mathfail
on August 22, 2009

## Comments are closed.