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Jill Bigley Dunham

Jill Bigley Dunham

Assistant Professor of Mathematics

Tel: 301-696-3729
Office: Hodson Science & Technology Center, Room 311
Office hours: Monday and Wednesday: 12:30-2:30 p.m.


  • Ph.D., George Mason University
  • M.S., George Mason University
  • B.S., Iowa State University

Courses taught

  • MATH 111: Problem Solving with Computational Tools
  • MATH 201: Workshop Calculus I
  • MATH 207: Discrete Mathematics


Jill Bigley Dunham, Ph.D, is an assistant professor of mathematics. She teaches courses in all areas of mathematics, including calculus and problem solving as well as in her areas of expertise, discrete math and graph theory. Professor Dunham holds a Ph.D. in mathematics and a masters degree in computational mathematics from George Mason University and an undergraduate degree in computer engineering from Iowa State University.


Research and Teaching Interests

In my research, I consider extremal coin graphs in the Euclidean plane. A coin graph is a graph whose vertices can be represented as closed, non-overlapping disks in the Euclidean plane such that two vertices are adjacent if and only if their corresponding disks intersect at their boundaries, i.e. they touch. One area of my research considers coin graphs that satisfy certain conditions relating to the ratios of the possible radii of coins in the graph. I use number theory and Galois theory to explore the algebraic equations describing wheel graphs as they relate to the maximum number of edges in certain coin graphs and used these equations to characterize wheel graphs with rational radii.

There is a strong interplay among graph theory, geometry, algebra (such as ring theory and Galois theory,) and number theory in my research that can be applied to other problems. I also explore research in computational aspects of these subjects.