Date of Award

Spring 2004

Document Type



Mathematics, Engineering & Computer Science

First Advisor

Mark Parker

Second Advisor

Holly Zullo

Third Advisor

Jeffrey Morris


This thesis explores topics in game theory within the framework of the popular game Mancala. Game theory is a branch of mathematical analysis developed to study decision making in conflict situations such as games. Mancala is believed to be one of the oldest games in the world, and makes a great study because of its many levels of complexity. I explore several variations of the game and demonstrate the increasing level of difficulty in developing optimal playing strategies.