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Christopher Mooney

Christopher Mooney

Asst Prof of Mathematics
 CSC 315
 (573) 592-5299
  • Mathematics and Physics


What is your academic background?

2008 BA Transylvania University (Lexington, KY) Mathematics, minors in History, Physics, Sociology.
2009 MA The University of Iowa Mathematics
2013 PhD The University of Iowa Mathematics

Research Areas: Commutative Algebra, Non-unique Factorization, Factorization in Rings with Zero-Divisors, Graph Theory

Have you held other jobs/careers?

Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Viterbo University (La Crosse, WI)

Why did you become a college professor?

My father is a professor and I fell in love with academia when I was able to live in Europe and attend school while my father was on sabbatical. My parents and teachers instilled a passion for learning. This was not restricted to books and the classroom, but includes a commitment to learning from the people and cultures around the world. It made sense to dedicate my life to the continuation of my own learning and help others to find and achieve their passions.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching at Westminster?

I attended a small private liberal arts college for my undergraduate education and I believe that this has shaped me into the person that I am today. The dedication to developing well rounded individuals and a lifetime of learning beyond the campus Westminster is what I enjoy the most about teaching here.

What do you like or appreciate the most about Westminster students?

The students are very hardworking, dedicated. I find the diversity of students at Westminster amazing and have found that each student has a fascinating life story to share with others.

Do you conduct research or undertake special projects with students? 

I study non-unique factorization in commutative rings with zero-divisors. I am especially interested in generalized factorization techniques. I also study zero and irreducible divisor graphs. (See more at https://sites.google.com/site/chrismooneymath/research)

I have worked with several students in the past studying tau_n factorization properties of the integers and modular integers. There are several projects I have in mind for students that are interested in algebra, factorization, and/or graph theory. I have also worked with students interested in the connections between math and computer science on projects related to machine learning and graph theory. Come talk to me if you are interested in learning more. Find more information at https://sites.google.com/site/chrismooneymath/research/undergraduate-research

Examples of course activities you provide that get students engaged

I like having students do activities in class to try to encourage mathematical discovery on their own instead of only learning from lectures.

Fill in the blanks:

Students develop oral communication skills in my class through class presentations.

Students develop writing skills in my class through proof writing.

Students develop confidence in my class through encouragement and support when working on challenging problems.

Students develop critical thinking skills in my class through generalizing and synthesizing concepts learned in class to new situations.

The most important way that students in my class prepare for future careers is through developing the ability to problem solve, think critically, communicate carefully and create rigorous, logically sound arguments.

Scholarly/professional highlights
2013-2014 Project NexT Fellow

Selected Scholarly Publications
(for more information, especially regarding current ongoing research see my research page)

  • Generalized Irreducible Divisor Graphs in Rings with Zero-Divisors, International Electronic Journal of Algebra, 20, 2016, 45–69.

  • τ-U-Factorizations and Their Graphs in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, with M. Axtell, In-
    ternational Electronic Journal of Algebra, 18, 2015, 72-91.

  • Generalized Factorization in Z/mZ, with A. Mahlum, Involve, 9:3 379-393, 2016

  • On Irreducible Divisor Graphs in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, Tamkang Journal of Math-
    ematics, 46:4 365-388, 2015.

  • τ-Regular Factorization in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, Rocky Mountain Journal of Mathematics, 46:4 1309–1349, 2016.

  • τ-Complete Factorization in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, Houston J. Math. 42:1 23-44,2016.

  • Generalized Irreducible Divisor Graphs, Comm. Algebra, 42:10 4366-4375, 2014.

  • Generalized-U-Factorization in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, Rocky Mountain Journal of Mathematics, 45:2 637-660, 2015.

  • Generalized Factorization in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, Houston J. Math. 41:1 15-32, 2015.

  • Generalized Factorization in Commutative Rings with Zero-Divisors, Ph.D. Thesis. The University of Iowa, 2013. (125 pages).

  • Determining Existence of Hadamard Difference Sets in Groups of Order 144, with N. Kroeger,
    M. Miller, and K. Shepard, Undergraduate Research Report, 2007, Central Michigan University.
    http://www.shsu.edu/ kws006/REU2007/KroegerMillerMooneyShepard.pdf


What do you like to do in your spare time?

I enjoy watching and playing sports. Soccer is my favorite sport to play and watch, but I also enjoy baseball, basketball and football, as well as disc golf. When I have larger chunks of spare time, I love to travel. (See https://sites.google.com/site/chrismooneymath/About-Me/travels )

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