Area of Study
Email Address
Christian A. Johnson Hall 111

Debra Boutin's mathematical interests include graph theory, geometric graph theory and group theory. In particular, Boutin works with graphs, their drawings and their symmetry groups. Her recent papers include "Geometric Graph Homomorphisms" with Sally Cockburn in the Journal of Graph Theory, which is forthcoming. They also include "Thickness and Chromatic Number of r-Inflated Graphs" with Michael O. Albertson and Ellen Gethner in Discrete Math, which is forthcoming, and "Determining sets, resolving sets, and the exchange property" in Graphs and Combinatorics 2009. She earned her doctorate in mathematics from Cornell University.

Recent Courses Taught

Linear Algebra
Modern Algebra
Graph Symmetries


  • Dean’s Scholarly Achievement Award for Early Career Achievement, Hamilton College
  • Project NExT Fellow
  • National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship, Office of Naval Research
  • Association for Women in Mathematics, honorable mention, Alice T. Schafer Mathematics Prize

Selected Publications

  • "The Cost of 2-Distinguishing Selected Kneser Graphs and Hypercubes," Journal of Combinatorial Mathematics and Combinatorial Computing, 85, 161-171, 2013.
  • "The Cost of 2-Distinguishing Cartesian Powers," Electronic Journal of Combinatorics, 20(1): Research Paper 74 (electronic), 2013.
  • "Posets of Geometric Graphs," with Sally Cockburn, Alice M. Dean, and Andrei M. Margea, Ars Mathematica Contemporanea, 5(2):265-284 (2012).
  • "Geometric Graph Homomorphisms," with Sally Cockburn, Journal of Graph Theory, 69(2):97-113, 2012.
  • "More Results on r-inflated Graphs: Arboricity, Thickness, Chromatic Number, and Fractional Chromatic Number," with Michael O. Albertson and Ellen Gethner, Ars Mathematica Contemporanea, 4:5-24, 2011.
  • The Thickness and Chromatic Number of r-Inflated Graphs, with Michael O. Albertson and Ellen Gethner, Discrete Math. 310(20): 2725–2734, 2010.
  • "Determining sets, resolving sets, and the exchange property," Graphs and Combinatorics, 25(6):789-806, 2009.
  • "The determining number of a Cartesian product," Journal of Graph Theory, 61(2):77-87, 2009.
  • "Small label classes in 2-distinguishing labelings," Ars Mathematica Contemporanea, 1(2):154-164, 2008.
  • "Automorphisms and distinguishing numbers of geometric cliques," with Michael O. Albertson, Discrete and Computational Geometry, 39(4):778-785, 2008.
  • "Thickness-two graphs. I. New nine-critical graphs, permuted layer graphs, and Catlins graphs," with Ellen Gethner and Thom Sulanke, Journal of Graph Theory, 57(3):198-214, 2008.
  • "Structure and properties of locally outerplanar graphs," Journal of Combinatorial Mathematics and Combinatorial Computing, 60:169-180, 2007.
  • "Using determining sets to distinguish Kneser graphs," with Michael O. Albertson, Electronic Journal of Combinatorics, 14(1):Research Paper 20 (electronic), 2007.
  • "Identifying graph automorphisms using determining sets," Electronic Journal of Combinatorics, 13(1):Research Paper 78 (electronic), 2006.
  • Distinguishing geometric graphs, with Michael Albertson, Journal of Graph Theory, 53(2):135-150, 2006.

College Service

Chair, Campus Planning Committee
Member, Academic Council
Member, Committee on Academic Policy
Treasurer, Faculty for Women’s Concerns
Member, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Board

Appointed to the Faculty


Educational Background

Ph.D., Cornell University
A.B., Smith College
A.S., Springfield Technical Community College

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