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Mike LeVan

Associate Professor of Mathematics

Brown Science Center 117
Transylvania University
300 North Broadway
Lexington, KY 40508-1797

Phone: (859) 233-8603
e-mail Mike LeVan


“My goal is for students to walk out of my class understanding that mathematics is a field that they can and will use every single day.”

In every class he teaches, associate math professor Mike LeVan emphasizes the practical application of mathematical theory. "Whether you're watching a TV program, reading the newspaper, or having a debate with friends, math is a useful tool that can help you understand many different topics," he says.

LeVan finds Transylvania's liberal arts curriculum vital in making those connections. "All of our students get experience in art, literature, history, economics, and many other disciplines," he points out. "This allows them to see the link between mathematics and the world we live in."

The personal attention that students receive in small classes also enriches Transylvania's academic environment, according to LeVan. "I challenge anyone to walk by the math professors' offices during the day and see how many math majors and other students are hanging out together, talking about math and anything else that comes to mind."

Those students often suggest special topics classes that they'd like to have LeVan teach or ask him to help them pursue independent studies. "They push the faculty to offer more classes in different areas," he says. "That requires me to stretch my bounds, which makes me a better teacher and a better mathematician."

In addition to mentoring Transylvania students, LeVan is committed to helping middle and high school students prepare for the rigors of college. He and computer science professor Kenny Moorman coordinate Transylvania summer camps on academics, computer programming, and robotics.


Recent publications

  • Computing the Kernel of a Nonlinear Code (with K. T. Phelps), Journal of Combinatorial Mathematics and Combinatorial Computing, vol. 20, February, 1996
  • Kernels of Nonlinear Hamming Codes (with K. T. Phelps), Designs, Codes, and Cryptography, vol. 6, no. 3, Nov 1995, pp. 247 - 257
  • Nonsystematic Perfect Codes (with K. T. Phelps), S.I.A.M. Journal of Discrete Math, vol. 12, No. 1, pp. 27 - 34
  • Switching Equivalence Classes (with K. T. Phelps), Designs, Codes, and Cryptography, vol. 16, no. 2, Feb 1999, pp. 179 184
  • Probability and Statistics; Schaums' Easy Outline, McGraw Hill Publishing, 2001, Abridgment Editor
  • Designing a Course in Linux System Admininstration, Linux Journal, April 2005
  • Linux in the Classroom: A Look Back, Linux Journal, July 2005

Want to know more about Transylvania's mathematics program?

Academic history

Courses taught

Awards and honors

Areas of research

Recent publications

Professional memberships

Academic history

  • Ph.D., Auburn University, 1995
  • M.A.M., Auburn University, 1991
  • B.S., Eastern Kentucky University, 1989

Courses taught

  • Functions
  • Contemporary Mathematics
  • Calculus 1, 2, 3
  • Linear Algebra
  • Abstract Algebra 1, 2
  • Graph Theory
  • Coding Theory
  • Senior Seminar
  • Foundations of Liberal Arts
  • History of Baseball
  • Ethics and Morals of Technology
  • Linux System Administration
  • Economics of Sports
  • Many Others

Awards and honors

  • Bingham Award for Excellence in Teaching (2000)
  • NSF Kentucky EPSCoR Grant (1997, 1999)
  • David and Betty Jones Grant for Faculty Development (1997 2010)

Areas of research

  • Combinatorial Designs and Coding Theory
  • Linux Adminstration
  • Quantitative Literacy

Professional memberships

  • Project NExT Fellow (1996, Blue Dot)
  • Project Kaleidoscope
  • The American Mathematical Society
  • Associate Fellow, The Institute of Combinatorics and its Applications
  • The Mathematical Association of America


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