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Algebra Qualifying Exam Solutions

Thomas Goller
September 4, 2011
Contents
1 Spring 2011 2
2 Fall 2010 8
3 Spring 2010 13
4 Fall 2009 17
5 Spring 2009 21
6 Fall 2008 25
1
Chapter 1
Spring 2011
1. The claim as stated is false. The identity element is a problem, since
1 = (12)(12) is a product of commuting 2-cycles, but has order 1. The statement
is correct if we exclude the identity:
Proposition 1. Let p be prime. An element 1 ,= S
n
has order p if and
only if is the product of (at least one) commuting p-cycles.
Proof. Suppose has order p. Let S
n
have (disjoint) cyclic decomposition
= C
1
. . . C
r
. The order of is the least common multiple of the sizes of the
C
i
, namely
p = [[ = lcm[C
i
[,
whence [C
i
[ = p for each i. Thus r 1 and the C
i
are disjoint, hence they
commute.
Conversely, suppose = C
1
. . . C
r
is a decomposition into (not necessarily
disjoint) commuting p-cycles, with r 1. Then by commutativity,

p
= C
p
1
. . . C
p
r
= 1,
so has order dividing p. Since ,= 1, this proves that has order p.
If p is not prime, then the theorem fails. For instance, (12)(345) S
5
has
order lcm2, 3 = 6, but is not the product of commuting 6-cycles.
2. First we compute the order of G = GL
2
(F
p
). For the rst row of the
matrix, there are p
2
1 possibilities, since we cannot have both entries be 0.
For the second row, there are p
2
p possibilities, since anything but a multiple
of the rst row ensures a nonzero determinant. Thus
[GL
2
(F
p
)[ = (p
2
1)(p
2
p) = p(p + 1)(p 1)
2
.
By Sylows theorem, the number n
p
of Sylow-p subgroups of G satises
n
p
[(p + 1)(p 1)
2
and n
p
1 (mod p).
2
So we have n
p
1, p + 1, (p 1)
2
, (p + 1)(p 1)
2
.
Consider the element
_
1 1
0 1
_
, which is of order p and generates a Sylow
p-subgroup P. Its transpose is also order p, so we can rule out n
p
= 1. Now,
note that if a, d ,= 0, then
1
ad
_
a b
0 d
__
1 1
0 1
__
d b
0 a
_
=
_
1 ad
1
0 1
_
,
whence every such
_
a b
0 d
_
is in the normalizer N
P
(G). There are p(p 1)
2
such elements, so since n
p
= (G : N
P
(G)) by Sylows theorem, we obtain the
bound n
p
p + 1. Thus n
p
= p + 1.
3. (a) We have [G[ = p
k
for k 2. Let G act on itself by conjugation,
with g
1
, . . . , g
r
distinct representatives of the non-central conjugacy classes of
G. The class equation gives
p
k
= [G[ = [Z(G)[ +
r

i=1
(G: C
G
(g
i
)).
Since [G[ = [C
G
(g
i
)[ (G: C
G
(g
i
)), each summand is divisible by p, so [Z(G)[
must be divisible by p and therefore nontrivial.
(b) Now, we prove by induction on k that G has normal subgroup of order
p
b
for each 1 j k1 (the cases j = 0, k are trivial). Since [Z(G)[ is divisible
by p, [Z(G)[ contains an element of order p by Cauchys theorem, whence Z(G)
contains an (abelian) subgroup Z or order p, which is normal in G since Z
is contained in the center of G. Then G

:= G/Z has order p


k1
, whence G

has normal subgroups



H
1
, . . . ,

H
k2
of orders p
1
, . . . , p
k2
, plus the identity
subgroup

H
0
:= 1.
Letting G

//
G

denote the natural surjection, we claim that the sub-


groups H
j
:=
1
(

H
j
) for 0 j k2 are of order p
j+1
and normal in G. The
order statement is clear, since cosets of Z in G have cardinality p. Now for any
x H
j
and g G, we have g x g
1


H
j
, so that since is a homomorphism,
gxg
1


H
j
. Thus gxg
1
H
j
, so H
j
is normal in G.
4. We have
A =
_
_
1 0 0
0 0 2
0 1 3
_
_
and wish to compute the rational and Jordan canonical forms (over Q and C,
respectively). The characteristic polynomial is f = (x 1)
2
(x 2) and the
minimal polynomial is p = (x 1)(x 2), which is proved by showing that
3
p(A) = 0. Thus the invariant factors are p
1
= p = (x 1)(x 2) = x
2
3x + 2
and p
2
= x 1 (we must have p
1
p
2
= f), so the rational form is
A
_
_
0 2 0
1 3 0
0 0 1
_
_
To conrm this, we note that
A
_
_
1
0
0
_
_
=
_
_
1
0
0
_
_
, A
_
_
0
1
0
_
_
=
_
_
0
0
1
_
_
, A
2
_
_
0
1
0
_
_
=
_
_
0
2
3
_
_
,
so that a basis that yields the rational form is
_
_
_
_
_
0
1
0
_
_
,
_
_
0
0
1
_
_
,
_
_
1
0
0
_
_
_
_
_
The associated change of basis matrix (expressing the new basis in terms of the
old basis just load in the vectors of the basis as the columns) is
P =
_
_
0 0 1
1 0 0
0 1 0
_
_
, with P
1
=
_
_
0 1 0
0 0 1
1 0 0
_
_
,
whence
P
1
AP =
_
_
0 2 0
1 3 0
0 0 1
_
_
.
(Since B
old
v
old
= B
new
v
new
and B
new
= B
old
P, we see that v
old
= Pv
new
, namely
P takes the old basis to the new basis, but takes vectors with coordinates in the
new basis to vectors with coordinates in the old basis. The new matrix should
act on vectors expressed in the new basis. So take such a vector, convert to the
old basis using P, then apply A, then use P
1
to take the result back to the
new basis.)
Now for the Jordan form. We have two Jordan blocks, one of size 2 associated
with the eigenvalue 1 and the other of size 1 for the eigenvalue 2. Since the
minimal polynomial has linear powers, each block is diagonalizable, so the result
is
A
_
_
1 0 0
0 1 0
0 0 2
_
_
.
4
5. First, Z[i] is an integral domain since by denition
(a +bi)(c +di) = ac bd + (ad +bc)i
is 0 if and only if a = b = 0 or c = d = 0.
We need to prove that there is a norm Z[i]
N
//
Z
0
such that for any
= a +bi, = c +di Z[i], where ,= 0, there are p +qi, Z[i] such that
= (p +qi) +, with = 0 or N() < N().
In Q[i], we have

= r + si, with r, s Q. Let p be an integer closest to r


and q an integer closest to s, so that [r p[ and [s q[ are
1
2
. Then setting
= (r p) + (s q)i and = , we have = (p +qi) +, so that Z[i].
Moreover, using the norm of Q[i] that is the natural extension of the norm of
Z[i], we have
N() = N()N()
N()
2
,
whence ,= 0 implies N() < N() since N() is an integer.
6. Skip.
7. Z/mZ
Z
Z/nZ is cyclic since
a b = b(a 1) = ab(1 1),
with 11 as a generator. Moreover, there exist integers a, b such that am+bn =
d, so
d(1 1) = (am+bn)(1 1) = (ambn) = 0,
whence the order of the cyclic group divides d. Now consider the map Z/mZ Z/nZ

//
Z/dZ
dened by
(a mod m, b mod n) ab mod d.
It is Z-bilinear, and the induced linear map Z/mZ
Z
Z/nZ

//
Z/dZ maps
1 1

1, an element of order d. Thus 1 1 has order a multiple of d, whence


the cyclic group has order at least d, and therefore exactly d. So

is an iso-
morphism.
8. Skip.
9. (a) First, note that x
4
5 is irreducible over Q by Eisenstein. Letting
denote the positive real number
4

5, the roots of x
4
5 in C are
4

5,
4

5,
2
4

5,
3
4

5,
5
where = i is a primitive fourth root of unity. Thus the splitting eld of E of
x
4
5 is E = Q(
4

5, i), which has degree 8 over Q.


Since i is a root of the irreducible polynomial x
2
+ 1, the 8 elements of
G = Gal(E/Q) are determined by
4

5 i
k
4

5, i i,
all of which are automorphisms of E. Letting
:
4

5 i
4

5, i i
and
:
4

5
4

5, i i,
we see that G = , = 1, ,
2
,
3
, , ,
2
,
3
, and that , satisfy the
relations
4
=
2
= 1 and =
3
. Thus G D
4
.
The inverted lattice of subgroups of D
4
is (DF 69)
1

2

2

3

2
,
2
,
,
The corresponding lattice of xed elds is
Q(
4

5, i)
Q(
4

5) Q(i
4

5) Q(

5, i) Q((1 +i)
4

5) Q((1 i)
4

5)
Q(

5) Q(i) Q(i

5)
Q
(b) The Galois group of Q(
4

5, i) over Q(

5) is
2
, , which is isomorphic
to Z
2
Z
2
, the Klein Viergruppe.
6
(c) The Galois group of Q(
4

5) over Q(i) is , isomorphic to Z


4
.
10. The extension Q(

2)/Q is Galois of degree 2, with basis 1,

2 over
Q. We claim that

3 / Q(

2). For suppose (a + b

2)
2
= 3 with a, b Q.
Then a
2
+ 2b
2
+ 2ab

2 = 3, whence a or b is 0, but 3 is not the square of a


rational number. Since Q(

3)/Q is of degree 2, so is Q(

2,

3)/Q(

2), whence
Q(

2,

3)/Q is of degree 4, with basis 1,

2,

3,

6.
Since Q(

2,

3) is the smallest extension of Q containing

2,

3, it is
the splitting eld of the separable polynomial (x
2
2)(x
2
3), hence a Galois
extension of Q.
Automorphisms of Q(

2,

3) xing Q must map

2,

3.
Since there are four such maps, and the degree of the extension is 4, each of
these maps is an automorphism. Let
:

2,

3
:

2,

3.
Then G = Gal(Q(

2,

3)/Q) = , . Since
2
=
2
= 1 and = , G is
isomorphic to Z
2
Z
2
.
11. Recall that for polynomials f, g F[x, y], where F is a eld, we have
deg(fg) = deg f + deg g. Suppose x
2
+ y
2
1 is reducible, factoring into the
non-units f, g. Then f, g must each be of degree 1, so we get an expression
(ax +by +c)(a

x +b

y +c

) = x
2
+y
2
1.
This implies aa

= bb

= cc

= 1, so all the coecients are nonzero. Moreover,


we deduce ab

= a

b, ac

= a

c, and bc

= b

c, whence b

= a

b/a and
a

c/a = c

= b

c/b. But the latter equalities imply a

/a = b

/b, contradicting
the former equality. So there is no such factorization, in either Q[x, y] or C[x, y].
7
Chapter 2
Fall 2010
1. We begin by computing the order of G := SL
2
(F
5
). The order of H :=
GL
2
(F
5
) is (5
2
1)(5
2
5), since the rst row of a matrix can be anything except
0, and then the second row can be anything except a linear multiple of the rst.
To modify this counting system for G, note simply that once the second row is
chosen for an element of H, there are 4 multiples of that row that yield elements
of H, but only one that gives an element of G. Thus
[G[ =
(5
2
1)(5
2
5)
4
= 4 5 6 = 120.
By Sylows theorem, the number n
5
of Sylow-5 subgroups of G satises
n
5
[24 and n
5
1 (mod 5).
So n
5
= 1 or n
5
= 6. But
_
1 1
0 1
_
and
_
1 0
1 1
_
are elements of degree 5 that generate distinct subgroups of order 5, so n
5
= 6.
2. The derived subgroup G
(1)
of G consists of the upper-triangular matrices
of the form
_
1 a
0 1
_
, a R.
A simple computation shows that every commutator is of this form, and we
have
_
1 0
0
1
2
__
1 a
0 1
__
1 0
0 2
__
1 a
0 1
_
=
_
1 a
0
1
2
__
1 a
0 2
_
=
_
1 a
0 1
_
,
and elements of this form do not generate any new elements. Note that G
(1)
is
abelian, so that G
(2)
, the subgroup of commutators of G
(1)
, is trivial. Thus the
8
derived series
1 = G
(2)
G
(1)
G
(0)
= G
shows that G is solvable.
3. We compute
2
=
2
= 1, that ,= , and that ()
3
= 1, whence
= ()
2
. Set a = and b = . Then the group contains the six elements
1, a, a
2
, b, ba, b
2
a
and is non-abelian, so it is isomorphic to D
3
S
3
.
One way of proving the isomorphism is to consider how , act on the x
values 2,
1
2
, 1. We see that swaps the rst two, but leaves the third xed,
while swaps the rst and third, leaving the second xed. Since the 2-cycles
(12) and (13) generate S
3
, we get a surjective homomorphism , S
3
. Since
the group contains six elements, the map is injective.
5. Hermitian matrices are normal, hence diagonalizable by unitary matri-
ces, and all their eigenvalues are real. In other words, if A is 5 5 Hermitian,
then there exists a 5 5 unitary matrix U such that U
1
AU is diagonal with
real entries. Conversely, every real diagonal matrix is Hermitian, and real diag-
onal matrices with dierent multiplicities of eigenvalues are not conjugate (by
the uniqueness of the Jordan form up to reordering of Jordan blocks). Since A
satises A
5
+ 2A
3
+ 3A 6I = 0 if and only if U
1
AU does as well, it suces
to classify real diagonal matrices A with eigenvalues in increasing order that
satisfy A
5
+2A
3
+3A6I = 0. Since A is diagonal, each entry on the diagonal
must be a zero of the polynomial f(x) = x
5
+ 2x
3
+ 3x 6. One such zero is
x = 1, but we have f

(x) = 5x
4
+ 6x
2
+ 3, which is strictly positive in the real
numbers. Thus f is monotonic increasing on the reals, so the only real zero of
f is x = 1. Thus the only possibility for A is I, so the unique conjugacy class is
I.
6. We wish to determine the number of conjugacy classes of 4 4 complex
matrices A satisfying A
3
2A
2
+A = 0. This means the minimum polynomial
p of A must divide x(x 1)
2
, so the possibilities for p are x, x 1, x(x 1),
(x 1)
2
, and x(x 1)
2
. Since p divides the characteristic polynomial, the
nine possible Jordan forms (up to reordering of blocks), which correspond to
conjugacy classes, are:
9
Minimal Polynomial Characteristic Polynomials Jordan Forms
x x
4
_
_
_
_
_
0
0
0
0
_
_
_
_
_
x 1 (x 1)
4
_
_
_
_
_
1
1
1
1
_
_
_
_
_
(x 1)
2
(x 1)
4
_
_
_
_
_
1
1 1
1
1
_
_
_
_
_
,
_
_
_
_
_
1
1 1
1
1 1
_
_
_
_
_
x(x 1) x
3
(x 1),
_
_
_
_
_
0
0
0
1
_
_
_
_
_
x
2
(x 1)
2
_
_
_
_
_
0
0
1
1
_
_
_
_
_
x(x 1)
3
_
_
_
_
_
0
1
1
1
_
_
_
_
_
x(x 1)
2
x
2
(x 1)
2
,
_
_
_
_
_
0
0
1
1 1
_
_
_
_
_
x(x 1)
3
_
_
_
_
_
0
1
1 1
1
_
_
_
_
_
7. Note that = 7
1/6
. The eld extensions Q(
3
)/Q and Q(
2
)/Q have
degrees 2 and 3 respectively (x
2
7 and x
3
7 are irreducible over Q since they
are of degree 3 and have no roots in Q), so both 2 and 3 divide the degree
of the extensions Q()/Q, whence this extension must have degree 6. Thus
1, , . . . ,
5
are linearly independent over Q, hence also over Z, and x
6
7 is
10
the minimal polynomial of (or use Eisenstein on x
6
7 to conclude that it is
irreducible).
It follows that Q() Q[x]/(x
6
7), using the map x, so that also
Z[] Z[x]/(x
6
7) as subrings. Moreover,
Z[]/(
2
) (Z[x]/(x
6
7))/( x
2
) Z[x]/(x
2
, 7) (Z/7Z)[x]/(x
2
),
so this ring consists of
Z[]/(
2
) = a +b : a, b Z/7Z,
which consists of 7 7 = 49 elements.
The elements of the form a + 0, a ,= 0 are units. Thus every ideal of
Z[]/(
2
) is principal since if it is proper and non-zero, then it must contain
0+b for some b ,= 0, whence it contains b
1
b = and is the ideal (). Note
that this ring is not a PID since it is not an integral domain, due to the fact
that
2
= 0, so is a zero divisor.
8. (i) Let denote the positive real number = 3
1/6
. By the argument
in the previous problem (or Eisenstein), Q()/Q is an extension of degree 6.
Over C, the polynomial x
6
3 factors as
x
6
3 = (x
3
3
1/2
)(x
3
+3
1/2
) = (x )(x
2
+x +
2
)(x +)(x
2
x +
2
),
so that using the quadratic formula, we see that the roots are
,

3
2
.
Thus the splitting eld of x
6
3 is Q(

3, ). Since Q() R,

3 / Q(), so
Q(,

3)/Q() is an extension of degree 2. Thus Q(,

3)/Q is an extension
of degree 12, so since Q(

3)/Q is degree 2, it follows that Q(,

3)/Q(

3)
is degree 6.
Actually, a much easier method is to note that the element

3 has degree
2 over Q(), and to use the multiplicativity of extension degrees over Q.
(ii) The rst step is to show x
6
3 is irreducible... ? I dont know very
much about nite elds.
9. Skip.
10. x
p
2 is irreducible over Q by Eisenstein, with distinct roots
p

2,
p

2, . . . ,
p1
p

2,
11
where is a primitive pth root of unity. Thus the splitting eld of x
p
2 is
Q(,
p

2). Since x
p
2 is irreducible, Q(
p

2) is a degree p extension of Q. Since


is a root of the irreducible polynomial (x
p
1)/(x1) = x
p1
+x
p2
+ +1 (one
proves irreducibility by substituting x+1 for x and then applying Eisenstein on
the prime p, or by showing that the cyclotomic polynomials are all irreducible),
Q() is a degree p 1 extension of Q. Since p and p 1 are relatively prime, we
see immediately that the degree of the extension Q(,
p

2) over Q is p(p 1).


The Galois group has order p(p 1), so each of the p(p 1) elements of the
form
:
p

2
n
p

2,
m
,
where 0 n p 1 and 1 m p 1, is an automorphism. If p = 2 then the
Galois group is clearly abelian, so suppose p > 2. Setting
:
p

2
p

2,
:
p

2
p

2,
2
,
we see that
()(
p

2) =
p

2,
but
()(
p

2) = (
p

2) =
2
p

2,
so the Galois group is not abelian.
12
Chapter 3
Spring 2010
1. For A
n
, let
= C
1
. . . C
r
be the (disjoint) cyclic decomposition. Suppose has order 2. Then
2 = [[ = lcm[C
i
[
implies that each C
i
is a 2-cycle. Since is an even permutation, r is even.
The product (ab)(cd) of two disjoint 2-cycles are the square of the 4-cycle
(acbd). Thus grouping the C
i
into pairs and taking the corresponding 4-cycles
gives an element S
n
of order 4 whose square is .
2. We may assume [G[ = p
k
for k 2. We rst prove the result when G is
not abelian. Consider the homomorphism
G

//
Aut(G) , g
g
;
where

g
:= x gxg
1
, x G.
The kernel of is Z(G), the center of G, which is a subgroup of G and therefore
a p-group. The image of is a subgroup of Aut(G), which is also a p-group
since it is isomorphic to G/ker . The image is non-trivial since G ,= Z(G) by
assumption, so we are done by Lagranges theorem.
If G is abelian, then
G = Z
p
k
1
Z
p
k
2
Z
p
kr
,
where k
i
k
i+1
1 for each i and k
1
+ +k
r
= k 2. Let x
1
, . . . , x
r
denote
generators of the factors of G. It suces to construct an automorphism with
order p. If k
1
= 1, then r 2, and the automorphism x
2
x
1
x
2
has order p.
So we may assume k
1
2, in which case the homomorphism : x
1
x
p
k
1
1
+1
1
13
is an automorphism since p
k11
+1 is relatively prime to p
k1
. We claim that
has order p. To see this, note that
(p
k11
+ 1)
p
=
p

n=0
_
p
n
_
p
(pn)(k11)
,
so since p [
_
p
n
_
for each 1 n p 1, every term in the sum is divisible by p
k1
except the last term, which is
_
p
p
_
p
0
= 1. Thus
x
1
x
p
k
1
1
+1
1
x
(p
k
1
1
+1)
2
1
x
(p
k
1
1
+1)
p
1
= 1
proves that
p
= 1. To see that no lower power of is 1, note that when
1 s < p,
(p
k11
+ 1)
s
=
s

n=0
_
s
n
_
p
(sn)(k11)
has exactly two terms not divisible by p
k1
, whose sum is
_
s
s 1
_
p
k11
+ 1 = s p
k11
+ 1,
which cannot be congruent to 1 modulo p
k1
.
3. Choose nonzero x M, and note that Rx = M. Thus there is a sur-
jective R-module homomorphism R

//
M dened by r rx. The kernel
I is a (two-sided) ideal of R. Thus M R/I as R-modules, whence M simple
implies that R/I has no nonzero proper left ideals, namely I is a maximal left
ideal. Im not sure how to show that I is unique if R is commutative.
4. Q/Z is a torsion Z-module, hence not a submodule of a free Z-module,
so it is not projective. Another way to see this is to note that the short exact
sequence
0
//
Z
//
Q
//
Q/Z
//
0
does not split, since Q does not contain a submodule isomorphic to Q/Z, and
there are no non-trivial Z-module homomorphisms Q Z.
Q/Z is injective since a Z-module M is injective if and only if it is divisible,
namely if nM = M for all 0 ,= n Z, and this latter condition is clear for Q/Z.
Q/Z is not at since the injective map Z Z dened by n 2n does not
remain injective after tensoring with Q/Z (look at the element (
1
2
+Z) 1).
5. If n
p
= 1, G has a normal Sylow p-subgroup, so assume n
p
> 1. By
Sylows theorem
n
p
1 (mod p) and n
p
[ q,
14
so we deduce that n
p
= q and n
p
= 1 + kp for some k 1. If we also assume
that n
q
> 1, then since
n
q
1 (mod q) and n
q
[ p
2
,
we must have n
q
= p
2
. But these results imply that G has q (p
2
1) elements
of order p or p
2
and p
2
(q 1) elements of order q, which is a contradiction since
if we also count the identity, then
1 +q(p
2
1) +p
2
(q 1) = 1 +p
2
q q +p
2
q p
2
1 +p
2
q = 1 +[G[.
Another method of proof is to use the second application of Sylows theorem
to deduce that q [ p
2
1, whence q [ p 1 or q [ p + 1 since q is prime. But
the rst application of Sylows theorem implies q = 1 + kp with k 1, so the
only possibility is q = p +1, so that p = 2 and q = 3 is forced since there are no
other consecutive primes. Now one uses the classication of groups of order 12
to get the result.
6. We have M a 5 5 real matrix satisfying (M I)
2
= 0, and wish to
show the subspace of R
5
of vectors xed by M has dimension at least 3. Since
the minimal polynomial p of M is either x 1 or (x 1)
2
, the characteristic
polynomial of M is f = (x 1)
5
. Viewing M as a complex matrix, the possible
Jordan forms for M are
_
_
_
_
_
_
1
1
1
1
1
_
_
_
_
_
_
,
_
_
_
_
_
_
1
1 1
1
1
1
_
_
_
_
_
_
,
_
_
_
_
_
_
1
1 1
1
1 1
1
_
_
_
_
_
_
.
These Jordan forms x subspaces of dimensions 5, 4, and 3, respectively. (If the
new basis is e
1
, . . . , e
5
, then the respective xed subspaces are V , e
2
, e
3
, e
4
, e
5
,
and e
2
, e
4
, e
5
.) Since the dimension of a subspace is not changed by conjuga-
tion (change of basis), we get the desired result.
7. If R is a eld, then R-modules are vector spaces over R, which are free.
Conversely, suppose R is not a eld. Choose x R not a unit, so that Rx R.
Then R/Rx is a non-trivial R-module that is not free since multiplication by x
kills every element.
8. Im assuming Z
7
denotes the nite eld with 7 elements, not the 7-adic
numbers. Polynomials of degree 2 or 3 over a eld are reducible if and only if
they have roots in the eld, so we need to nd the number of degree 3 polyno-
mials without any roots in Z
7
. Now it seems dicult to proceed...
15
9. Let denote the primitive nth root of unity contained in F and let
be an nth root of a. Then E = F() contains all the nth roots of a, namely
, , . . . ,
n1
,
so E is the splitting eld of the separable polynomial x
n
a, whence E/F is
Galois.
Any automorphism of E xing F must be a homomorphism of the form

r
, 0 r n 1.
Let d > 0 be minimal such that
d
F, whence d[n since
n
= a F. We claim
that x
d

d
F[x] is the minimal polynomial of over F. For if f(x) F[x]
is the minimal polynomial, then f[(x
d

d
), hence every root of f is in the set
of roots above. Thus the constant term of f is of the form (1)
s

d1

ds

s
,
which must be in F, whence d[s, where s = deg f, so we must have f = x
d

d
.
It follows that x
d

d
is irreducible and E/F has degree d. If
r

denes an automorphism, then


d

rd

d
implies
rd
= 1, so n[rd. Thus we
must have r a multiple of n/d, and since there are precisely d such multiples,
we see that every such multiple must be an automorphism and
Gal(E/F) = 1,
n/d
, . . . ,
(d1)n/d
,
which is cyclic with generator
n/d
.
10.
Theorem 1 (Hilberts basis theorem). If A is a Noetherian ring (commutative,
with identity), then A[x] is Noetherian.
Proof. We prove the result by showing any ideal a A[x] is nitely generated.
Let I A be the ideal of leading coecients of elements of a, which is nitely
generated by some elements a
1
, . . . , a
n
A since A is Noetherian. Choose
elements f
1
, . . . , f
n
a so that each f
i
has leading coecient a
i
. Let r
i
denote
the degree of f
i
and set r := max
i
r
i
. Then if f a has degree r and leading
coecient a I, choose u
i
A such that a = u
1
a
1
+ +u
n
a
n
. It follows that
by multiplying u
i
f
i
by appropriate powers of x and taking the sum, we can kill
o the leading term of f. Thus
a = (a M) + (f
1
, . . . , f
m
),
where M is the A-module generated by 1, x, . . . , x
r1
. Since M is nitely gen-
erated and A is Noetherian, M is Noetherian, hence a M M is nitely
generated. Combining the generators with the f
i
gives a nite generating set
for a.
16
Chapter 4
Fall 2009
1. Every element of S
7
has a unique (up to reordering) disjoint cycle decom-
position, and the order of the element is the lcm of the lengths of the cycles.
Thus the only elements of order 4 are the 4-cycles, and the combinations of
4-cycles with disjoint 2-cycles. The number of 4-cycles is
_
7
4
_
3! = 7 6 5, and
the number of possibilities for 2-cycles using the remaining 3 indices is
_
3
2
_
= 3.
Thus the total number of elements of order 4 is
7 6 5(1 + 3) = 840.
2. Let G act on itself by conjugation. Let g
1
, . . . , g
r
denote representatives
of the conjugacy classes of non-central elements. The class equation yields
[G[ = [Z(G)[ +
r

i=1
(G : C
G
(g
i
)),
where C
G
(g
i
) is the centralizer of g
i
in G. The index of each centralizer divides
[G[, hence is divisible by p, so we must have p[[Z(G)[, hence Z(G) is non-trivial.
3. By the fundamental theorem of Galois theory, the eld extensions of E
contained in F correspond bijectively to the subgroups of G = Gal(F/E) as the
xed subelds. Thus is xed by every proper subgroup of G, but not all of
G. It follows that if G is an element not xing , then = G, i.e. G is
cyclic.
Since F/E is a proper extension, we can choose p prime such that [G[ = p
k
n,
with k 1 and (n, p) = 1. We wish to prove that n = 1, so assume for
contradiction that n > 1. Then
p
k
and
n
are proper subgroups of G,
hence x . Since (p
k
, n) = 1, the Euclidean algorithm ensures we can nd
17
a, b Z such that ap
k
+bn = 1. But then
() = (
p
k
)
a
(
n
)
b
() = ,
contradiction.
4. If 0 ,=
m
n
Q/Z is reduced, by which we mean 0 < m < n and
gcdm, n = 1, then
m
n
has order n in Q/Z. Thus
m
n
contains n elements, so
that in particular we see that
m
n
=
1
n
.
Given
1
n1
,
1
n2
Q/Z with n
1
, n
2
2, let n = lcmn
1
, n
2
. We claim that
1
n

_
1
n
1
,
1
n
2
_
,
whence
_
1
n
1
,
1
n
2
_
=
_
1
n
_
since the inclusion is obvious. For the claim, we use the Euclidean algorithm
on n
1
and n
2
to nd a, b Z such that
an
1
+bn
2
= gcdn
1
, n
2
,
and then divide both sides by n
1
n
2
to get
b
1
n
1
+a
1
n
2
= lcmn
1
, n
2
= n.
This proves the claim.
Now we are ready to prove the result of the problem. Given
_
m
1
n
1
, . . . ,
m
r
n
r
_
Q/Z,
where each generator is reduced, set n = lcm(n
1
, . . . , n
r
). Then we have
_
m
1
n
1
, . . . ,
m
r
n
r
_
=
_
1
n
_
.
For the previous comments imply we can replace each
mi
ni
by
1
ni
, and the above
method for combining two generators, together with induction on the number
of generators, give the result.
5. We compute 520 = 2
3
5 13. Suppose G is simple. Then
n
13
1 (mod 13) and n
13
[ 2
3
5
18
implies n
13
= 2
3
5 since n
13
> 1. Likewise n
5
= 2 13. So we have (131) 2
3
5
elements of order 13 and (5 1) 2 13 elements of order 5. But
12 2
3
5 + 4 2 13 > 12 2
3
5 + 2
3
5 = 13 2
3
5 = [G[,
contradiction.
6. (a) We have M a matrix satisfying M
2
+ M + I = 0 and wish to nd
the possible rational canonical forms over R. Since x
2
+x + 1 = (x )(x

)
for =
1+3i
2
, we see that x
2
+x+1 is irreducible over R, hence is the minimal
polynomial of M over R. The corresponding rational block is
_
0 1
1 1
_
,
and M must be composed of 1 of these blocks on its diagonal.
(b) Now M is over C and we wish to nd all possible Jordan forms. The
possible minimal polynomials are x, x

, and (x)(x

). In any case, the


minimal polynomial factors linearly, so M is diagonalizable, with eigenvalues
and

. Thus the Jordan form of M is an n n diagonal matrix (n 1) with
some number r of s (0 r n), then (n r)

s on its diagonal.
7. Consider the ring of fractions R

:= S
1
R. Prime ideals of R

correspond
to prime ideals of R

that dont meet S via the ring homomorphism


R

//
R

, r
r
1
,
since the preimage of a prime ideal under a ring homomorphism is a prime ideal.
An ideal a of R that is maximal among ideals not meeting S thus corresponds
to a maximal ideal a

of R

, so a

is prime, hence a =
1
(a

) is prime as well.
8. Skip.
9. First we state a general result. If
n
is a primitive nth root of unity,
then the Galois group of Q(
n
)/Q is isomorphic to the multiplicative group
(Z/nZ)

of order (n). For


n
is a root of the degree (n) irreducible cyclotomic
polynomial
n
(x) =

(x
a
), where
a
ranges across the primitive nth roots
of unity, hence the degree of the extension is (n). This means the Galois group
has order (n). Since any automorphism is determined by (
n
) =
a
n
, and
there are precisely (n) possibilities for a, every such map is an automorphism
of Q(
n
), whence we obtain an isomorphism
(Z/nZ)

Gal(Q(
n
)/Q)
19
a (
n

a
n
).
Now we take n = 11 above and let be a primitive 11th root of unity.
The Galois group G of the extension Q()/Q is isomorphic to the cyclic group
(Z/11Z)

Z/10Z Z/2Z Z/5Z. Let H be a subgroup of G isomorphic to


Z/2Z, which is normal since G is abelian. Let F be the xed eld of H. Then
F/Q is Galois by the fundamental theorem of Galois theory, with Galois group
G

G/H Z/5Z.
10. We state and prove the Eisenstein criterion for irreducibility of poly-
nomials.
Proposition 2 (Eisenstein criterion). Let R be an integral domain, p a prime
ideal of R, and p(x) = x
n
+ a
n1
x
n1
+ + a
0
R[x] a monic polynomial
such that each a
i
p, but a
0
/ p
2
. Then p is irreducible in R[x].
Proof. Suppose for contradiction that p(x) = a(x)b(x) in R[x], where a, b are
non-constant polynomials (i.e. non-units, since the only constants that divide
1 are units). Reducing modulo p, we see that x
n
a(x) b(x) in R/p[x], which
is an integral domain since R/p is an integral domain. Thus both a and

b must
have 0 constant term (otherwise the non-zero lowest degree terms of a and

b,
which exist since neither a nor

b can be 0 due to our equation, multiply to
something nonzero of degree < n), i.e. the constant terms of both a and b are
in p. But then the constant term of p is in p
2
, contradiction.
20
Chapter 5
Spring 2009
1. Elements of S
n
with the same cycle type are conjugate to each other. There
are (p 1)! p-cycles in S
p
, so the order of the orbit of under conjugation is
(p 1)!. Thus [C[ = [S
P
[/(p 1)! = p, so C = , which is abelian.
Now let S
p
act on the set of its subgroups by conjugation. Since there are
(p 1)! p-cycles in S
p
, there are (p 1)!/(p 1) = (p 2)! distinct subgroups of
order p, all of which are in the orbit of since is conjugate to every other
p-cycle. So the order of N is p!/(p2)! = p(p1). To see that N is not abelian,
let N be an element satisfying

1
=
2
.
Then
1

1
= ,= 1.
2. The derived subgroup G
(1)
of G consists of the p upper-triangular
matrices of the form
_
1 a
0 1
_
, a Z/pZ.
A simple computation shows that every commutator is of this form, and we
have
_
1 0
0
1
2
__
1 a
0 1
__
1 0
0 2
__
1 a
0 1
_
=
_
1 a
0
1
2
__
1 a
0 2
_
=
_
1 a
0 1
_
,
and elements of this form do not generate any new elements. Note that G
(1)
is
abelian, so that G
(2)
, the subgroup of commutators of G
(1)
, is trivial. Thus the
derived series
1 = G
(2)
G
(1)
G
(0)
= G
shows that G is solvable.
21
3. We have a group G with [G[ = 81 = 3
4
acting on a set X with [X[ = 30.
Since the stabilizer S
x
of x X is a subgroup of G, [S
x
[ is a power of 3. The
index (G : S
x
) of S
x
in G also divides [G[, hence is a power of 3. Since the cosets
of S
x
are in bijection with the elements of the orbit O
x
of x, (G : S
x
) = [O
x
[,
so [O
x
[ is a power of 3. Recall that the orbits partition X.
Suppose no element of X is xed by at least 27 elements. This means that
[S
x
[ < 27 for each x X, so that [O
x
[ > 3 for each x. This is impossible since
no sum involving only 9s and 27s equals 30.
An element x X xed by precisely 3 elements of G is in an orbit of order
27. If there is such an element, then every other element of the orbit is xed by
precisely 3 elements as well. So there are 27 such elements.
4. Skip.
5. Suppose R is a commutative ring with identity 1 ,= 0, and suppose that
for each prime p R, R
p
contains no nonzero nilpotents. Now if 0 ,= a R
is nilpotent, then a
n
= 0 for some positive integer n. Then we can choose a
maximal ideal m (Zorns lemma argument), which is prime and hence contains
a. Then
a
1
R
m
is a nonzero nilpotent, yet (
a
1
)
n
=
0
1
, contradiction.
If we dont assume that R has an identity, then there may not be maximal
ideals or even prime ideals (e.g. Q with trivial multiplication ab = 0 for all
a, b Q). Im not sure what to do in this case.
6. Finitely generated ideals in a UFD are principal, generated by the gcd
of the generators. So the rst step is to compute the greatest common factor of
the two polynomials. We do this by the Euclidean algorithm, which produces
the following output:
a b q r
x
4
4x
3
+ 3x
2
4x + 2 x
3
5x
2
+ 6x 2 x + 1 2x
2
8x + 4
x
3
5x
2
+ 6x 2 2x
2
8x + 4
1
2
x
1
2
0
Thus the gcd of the polynomials is 2x
2
8x+4, so the ideal a is (x
2
4x+2) =
((x 2 +

2)(x 2

2)). It follows that a is principal, but not prime, and


hence also not maximal.
7. Skip.
8. Skip.
22
9. No, is not necessarily an automorphism. Let t be an indeterminate
and consider Q(t)/Q. Dene Q(t)

//
Q(t) by t t
2
. Then xes Q and
is easily shown to be a homomorphism of Q(t). But is not surjective, hence
not an automorphism of Q(t).
The statement is true with the additional assumption that L/K is an alge-
braic extension. Then if LK, the fact that is a homomorphism implies
that () must be another root of the minimal polynomial for over K. This
means is injective. For surjectivity, suppose L K and let L K
denote the set of all roots of the minimal polynomial of over K that are con-
tained in L. Then , is nite, and permutes the elements of since it
maps L into L, whence must be in the image.
10. = e
2i/8
is a primitive 8th root of unity. Thus by the argument in 9
of Fall 2009, Q()/Q has Galois group G (Z/8Z)

Z
2
Z
2
, generated by
:
3
and :
5
.
The inverted subgroup lattice is
1

,
with corresponding lattice of xed elds
Q()
Q( +
3
) Q( +
7
) Q(
2
)
Q
where the latter cannot be Q( +
5
) since +
5
= 0! This is much clearer if
we take a dierent approach.
Write =
1

2
(1 + i). Then
2
= i and the remaining powers are easily
computed. Note that Q() = Q(

2, i), which is clearly an extension of degree 4


over Q since it decomposes into a pair of quadratic extensions. Automorphisms
of Q(

2, i) xing Q must map

2, i i,
23
and since there are only 4 such possibilities, they must all be automorphisms.
Let
:

2, i i
:

2, i i
be generators of the Galois group, where we have chosen them to correspond to
, above. The lattice of xed elds is then
Q()
Q(i

2) Q(

2) Q(i)
Q
and we note that +
3
= i

2, +
7
=

2, and
2
= i.
24
Chapter 6
Fall 2008
1. By Sylows theorem,
n
5
1 (mod 5) and n
5
[7
2
;
n
7
1 (mod 7) and n
7
[5
2
.
The only possibilities are n
5
= n
7
= 1, so G has normal subgroups H, K of
orders 5
2
and 7
2
, respectively. Since 5, 7 are relatively prime, H K = 1.
Thus HK H K, and since the left side is a subgroup of G while the right
side has the same order as G, we see that G H K.
Now, it is easy to show that groups of order p
2
are abelian, hence either
isomorphic to Z
p
Z
p
or Z
p
2. (Use the class equation to show G has non-trivial
center; so if g ,= 1 in the center, it either generates G or there is some h / g,
whence G = g, h, but g, h commute so G is abelian.) Thus G is abelian, with
possible isomorphism classes
Z
5
2 Z
7
2, Z
5
2 Z
7
Z
7
, Z
5
Z
5
Z
7
2, Z
5
Z
5
Z
7
Z
7
.
25