Faculty Profile

Robbin O'Leary

Robbin O’Leary

Professor of Mathematics

Email: roleary@spu.edu
Phone: 206-281-2285
Office: Otto Miller Hall 132

Education: BA, Goshen College, 1980; MS, Idaho State University, 1985; PhD, University of Texas at Austin, 1990. At SPU since 1990.

Dr. Robbin O’Leary teaches all levels of mathematics at Seattle Pacific University. She particularly likes teaching calculus and abstract mathematics, as well as mathematics for those students who are not scientifically oriented. She earned her doctorate from the University of Texas at Austin in Number Theory, and considers teaching a “Number Theory” class at SPU a joy. Prior to graduate school, she taught math to seventh to 12th grade students.

Along with Number Theory, Dr. O’Leary is interested in mathematics education, particularly the education of undergraduate students and pre-service teachers.

For recreation, Dr. O’Leary enjoys reading, gardening, cooking, and music. As an undergraduate, she majored in music as well as mathematics and also continues to occasionally play cello “just for fun” in the SPU orchestra. She and her husband have two young-adult sons.

Selected publications

O’Leary, Robbin. “Thinking about the Infinite.” Response, Winter 2012.

Young, Sharon, and Robbin O’Leary. “Creating Numerical Scales for Measuring Tools,” Exploring Mathematics through Literature: Articles and Lessons for Prekindergarten through Grade 8. Ed. D. Thiessen. 2nd. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, 2015. In press.

Young, Sharon, and O’Leary, Robbin. Creating Numerical Scales for Measuring Tools, Teaching Children Mathematics Vol. 8 No. 7, (2002), 400–05.

O’Leary, Robbin, and Vaaler, Jeffrey D. Small Solutions to Inhomogeneous Linear Equations Over Number Fields, Transactions of the American Mathematical Society 336 (1993), 915–31.

Please view Dr. O’Leary’s CV (PDF) for additional publications.


Glimpsing God

“Thinking About the Infinite: A Mathematical Concept — and a Glimpse of God”: Insights from Dr. Robbin O’Leary

Robbin O

Why I Teach at SPU

Robbin O’Leary, Professor of Mathematics

“At SPU I am able to teach a broad spectrum of mathematics and encourage students’ learning and growth.  I teach students who love math, and help them understand mathematical structure, to follow an elegant proof and catch the intricacies of the creation that follows. I also teach students who find math difficult. With them, I find joy in providing a positive mathematical learning experience where they can succeed beyond their expectations.”