Area of Study
Email Address
Christian A. Johnson Hall 110

Among Sally Cockburn’s teaching interests are set theory and the philosophical foundations of mathematics. She has published on combinatorial optimization (“On the domino-parity inequalities for the STSP”) with Sylvia Boyd and Danielle Vella, in Mathematical Programming Series A 2006.

Cockburn's publications also include work about geometric graph theory. “Geometric Graph Homomorphisms,” with Debra Boutin, of Hamilton College, appeared in 2012 in the Journal of Graph Theory. Cockburn, who joined the Hamilton faculty in 1991, earned her doctorate from Yale University with a dissertation in algebraic topology.

Recent Courses Taught

Linear Optimization
Real Analysis
Linear Algebra
Philosophical Foundations of Mathematics


Mathematical Association of America Carl B. Allendoerfer Award (2014)
Class of 1963 Faculty Fellowship, Hamilton College (2005)
Class of 1963 Faculty Fellowship, Hamilton College (1996)

Selected Publications

  • “The homomorphism poset of K2,n,” with Yonghyun Song ’13, Australasian Journal of Combinatorics, October 2013, Vol. 57, pp. 79 – 108.
  • "Deranged Socks", with Joshua Lesperance, Mathematics Magazine, April 2013, Vol. 86, Issue 2, pp. 97 – 109.
  • "Modeling Preferential Admissions at Elite Liberal Arts Schools," with Timothy Kelly and Gordon Hewitt, Research in Higher Education Journal, Volume 19, March 2013; ISSN 1943-3432.
  • "Posets of Geometric Graphs," with Debra Boutin, Alice Dean and Andrei Margea, Ars Mathematica Contemporanea 5 (2012), pp. 265 – 284.
  • "Geometric Graph Homomorphisms," with Debra Boutin, Journal of Graph Theory, February 2012, Vol. 69, Issue 2, pp. 97 - 113.
  • “The Senior Seminar in Philosophical Foundations of Mathematics,” latest draft October 2013. Accepted for inclusion in collection of essays on using philosophy of mathematics in the teaching of mathematics for MAA Notes, co-edited by Carl Behrens, Bonnie Gold and Roger Simon. Anticipated publication in 2015.
  • “Preimages of Geometric Cycles”, latest draft October 2013.
  • “The Homomorphism Poset of K3,3”, arXiv.org 1306.5732
  • “Bipartite Thickness-2 Geometric Graphs”; latest draft August 2012.
  • Senior Seminar Workbook in Set Theory, latest draft December 2012.
  • A180487, The On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences, e-published at http://oeis.org, Sept.
  • "On the domino-parity inequalities for the STSP," with Sylvia Boyd and Danielle Vella. Mathematical Programming Series A, online January 2006, Pages 1 - 19, DOI 10.1007/s10107-006-0011-6, URL http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10107-006-0011-6; in print Vol. 110, Number 3, Sept. 2007, pp. 501 - 520.
  • “Some Problems are NP-Harder than Others,” with Ben Coleman, Kay Somers, and R. Bruce Mattingly; Module 06-1, DIMACS Educational Module Series, June 2006.
  • "A family of facet-inducing domino-parity inequalities for the STSP," with Sylvia Boyd. Published as Technical Report TR-2001-09 (non-refereed) at the University of Ottawa, November 2001.
  • “A Counter-example to the Admissibility of the ! -Filtration on 2-Groups,” Journal of Algebra, Vol. 167, No. 2, 1994, pp. 501-532.

College Service

  • Faculty secretary, July 2013 – June 2014
  • Faculty member of the Appeals Board, July 2014 - present
  • Member of the Experiential Learning Subcommittee (CAP liaison), 2012-13
  • Member of the Writing Intensive Guidelines Revision Subcommittee (CAP liaison), 2011-12
  • Member of the Committee on Academic Policy, 2011-13
  • Faculty affiliate for the men’s and women’s squash teams, 2010 – present
  • Mellon curricular leader for quantitative and symbolic reasoning, 2009-11
  • Member of the Honor Court, 2008-11
  • Assistant squash coach, 2008-09
  • Chair, Strategic Planning Subcommittee on Athletics, March – June 2008
  • Head women’s squash coach, 2004-08
  • Chair of the Committee on Athletics, 2001-02
  • Member of the Committee on Athletics, 2000-01
  • Assistant squash coach, 1999 – 2004
  • Member of the Committee on Academic Standing, 1999 – 2003
  • Member of the Mellon Assessment Project Working Group, 1999 – 2000
  • Member of the Honor Court, 1996-97
  • Member of the Sexual Harassment Grievance Board, Aug 1995 - June 1997
  • Member of the Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault Policy Review Committee, Jan - April 1996
  • Faculty secretary, Feb. - June 1994
  • Academic advisor, 1992 - present

Professional Affiliations

Mathematical Association of America
Mathematical Programming Society

Appointed to the Faculty


Educational Background

Ph.D., Yale University
M.Sc., Queen’s University
M.Sc., University of Ottawa
B.Sc. (Honors), Queen’s University

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