Paul Isihara, Ph.D.

Professor of Mathematics
On Faculty since 1987


Ph.D. SUNY Buffalo, 1987
Dissertation on analytical and numerical analysis of a non-linear ordinary differential equation model arising in neurobiology.

B.A. Houghton College, 1979

About Paul Isihara

Dr. Paul Isihara joined Wheaton's faculty in 1987 after lecturing two years at Rochester Institute of Technology while completing his dissertation. He enjoys teaching students in many different areas and levels of college mathematics, and has been involved with undergraduate research in several different fields including atonal music theory, knot theory, cwatset theory, relational database and coding theory, wind turbines, dynamical systems in epidemiology, typhoon prediction, and community based operations research.

Dr. Isihara is also passionate about ministry, and has experience working with inner-city youth, mentally ill, homeless, and internationals. He helped develop an engineering college in Tigray, Ethiopia and is currently collaborating with the College’s Humanitarian Disaster Institute in projects in Japan and the Philippines.

He has a lifelong interest in playing classical and worship music on violin.

Courses Taught

  • Math 101 Quantitative Skills
  • Math 218, 221, 231, 232, 331 Calculus at Different Levels
  • Math 243, 343 Discrete Math 
  • Math 385 Topics in Applied Math: Community Development Models
  • Math 493 Mentored Research 

Membership in Professional Societies

  • Mathematical Association of America (various years)
  • Association of Christians in the Mathematical Sciences


Discrete Math, Math Modeling, Community Based Operations Research, and research experiences for undergraduates.



Isihara, P. and Knapp, M* 1993. Basic Z12 Analysis of Musical Chords. UMAP Journal, 14(4):319-348.

Bush, NE* and Isihara, P 2001. The Cwatset of a Graph. Mathematics Magazine, 74(1): 41-47.

Isihara, P. and Schoonmaker, K. 2001. An Elementary Introduction to Relational Database Theory. UMAP Journal, 22(1), 27-62.

Isihara, P. and Koenigsberg, A.* 2002. A Note on the Utility of Kauffman's State Summation Formula for the Bracket Polynomial. Journal of Knot Theory and its Ramifications. 11(1): 13-79.

Isihara, P., Clements*, J., Kamerlander*, R., Landry, W.*, Soyars, J.* and Stapleton, N.* 2004. Windturbine Power Coefficient Optimization. UMAP Journal, 25(4):405-438.

Isihara, P., Barker, A.*, Hostetter, J.*, Hubbell, M.*, Hunsberger, K.*, Waite, K.* and Wison, R.* 2005. Immunological and Epidemiological HIV/AIDS Modelling. UMAP Journal, 261:49-90.

Isihara, P., Noonan, B.* and N. Stapleton*. Liouville's Theorem in Dynamics. In UMAP/ILAP Modules 2002-3: Tools for Teaching., Bedford, M.A.: Comap, Inc., 49-68.

Isihara, P. and J. Whitmore* 2007. Photovoltaic Systems off Grid. The UMAP Journal 28(1): 41-74.

Barker,A.*, K. Hunsberger*, and P. Isihara, 2007. Using Prime Factor Class Invariants to obtain another expansion for (ln2) 2, The Pi Mu Epsilon Journal, 12, 385-390.

Abrehu, H.*, Hailu, T.*, Weleslassie H.*, Betts, A.*, Krage*, P., and Isihara A. 2009. Wireless Signal Processing. In UMAP/ILAP Modules 2008: Tools For Teaching., Bedford, M.A.: Comap Inc., 1-76.

Isihara, P. with Bixby D.*, Felker, J.*, Kerins, M., Kuo, H.*, Slye D.* and Izatt M. 2009. Options Pricing Using Arbitrage and Stochastic Calculus. The UMAP Journal 30(1):37-89.

Dornbush, D.*, Isihara, P., Dennison, T.*, Russo, K.*, Schultz, D.* Gravity-Fed Water Delivery Systems. The UMAP Journal 30.4(2010): 283-322.    

Isihara, P. and Buursma, D.*.  2013. Multipeg Tower of Hanoi, The College Mathematics Journal, 44(2), 110-116.

Isihara, P., Bowen, A.*, Brown,I.*, Dennison,T.*, Hanna,W.*, and Williams,K.* 2013. The CWS Model of Alzheimer's Disease. UMAP Journal, 34(1), 3-19.

Diedrichs D, Isihara P, Buursma D.* 2014. The Schedule Effect: Can Recurrent Peak Infections be Reduced Without Vaccines, Quarantines or School Closings? Mathematical Biosciences, 248C,46-53.

Diedrichs, D, Phelps, K.*, Isihara, P. 2016. Quantifying Communication Effects in Disaster Response Logistics: A Multiple Network System Dynamics Model. Journal of Humaitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management. 6(1), 24-45.

Isihara, P., Dinkins, H.*, Edman J.*, Flora, S.*, McNeil, C.*, Swain, E.*, Thomas, H.*, Varberg,N.*, and Diedrichs, D. 2016. Number parity duality, non-distributivity, and a nonlinear error-correcting code, Pi Mu Epsilon Journal,  to appear.

Carlson, C.*, Isihara, P., Sandburg, R., Boan, D., Phelps, K.*, Lee, K.*, Diedrichs, D., Cuba, D.*, Edman, J., Gray, M.*, Hesse, R.*, Kong, R.*, Takazawa, K.*. 2016. Introducing PEARL: A Gini-like index and reporting tool for public accountability and equity in disaster response. Journal of Humaitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management. 6(2), to appear.



"A Conjectured Paradigm Shift in Twenty-First Century Mathematics Pedagogy," presented at the Ninth ACMS Conference, Westmont College on June 5, 1993. Paper included in conference proceedings.

"Mathematical Equivalence of Musical Chords," presented at the AMSIMAA Joint National Meetings, Cincinnati Ohio on January 15, 1994.

"Mathematical Representations of Musical Chords," presented during the Integrated Science Seminar Series, Northwestern University on April 11, 1994.

"Maple Analysis of Knots", presented at the 14th Annual International Conference on Technology in Collegiate Mathematics, Baltimore Maryland on November 2, 2001.

"Highlights of My Research with Undergraduates," presented at a Natural Science Division seminar, International Christian University, Tokyo, Japan in 2005.

Invited panelist on undergraduate research, 17th ACMS Conference, Wheaton College on May 27 , 2009.

“HCJB Applied Math Seminar: Mathematics of Digital Signal Processing” at the HCJB Global Tech Center, Elkhart, IN on July 31, 2012.

“Mobile and Mapping Tools for Emergency Disaster Response” at the HCJB Global Tech Center, Elkhart IN on Aug. 8, 2013.

“The Mathematical Samaritan: For All Humanitarian Purposes” at Beloit College on Feb. 26, 2014.

“Finite Fields and Error-Correcting Codes” at North Central College on May 8, 2014.

"Creativity in Undergraduate Mathematics" at SonSet Solutions, Elkhart IN on July 7, 2015.

Media Center