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Defining Polynomial Basis and Generic Polynomials

Given a Extension Field , say GF(2*4) with modulus polynomial f(x), I would like to a) Define a polynomial basis [1,x,x^2,x^3] for its elements. b) Define a general polynomial as a0 + a1x + a2*x^2 +a^3. Currently for part (a) I am defining the basis as a tuple, but I have an inkling that it is the worst possible fix. Kindly suggest a better alternative and a solution for part (b).