Spring 2009, UAF
SYLLABUS, 5 April 2009
Differential equations are the form in which science and
use mathematics most frequently. The goal of Math 302 is the
understanding of ordinary differential equations, along with methods
for their solution.
understand why you had to take so much calculus! You will begin
think of mathematics dynamically and in terms of movies instead of
static graphs of functions.
I will try to avoid a "cookbook" approach to
equations. This may well make it harder. Visualizing
differential equations will be emphasized. Systems of
differential equations will be introduced as soon as possible.
We will cover chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 8 of the textbook, and
I will try to motivate the ideas in chapters 9 and 10 as well.
Exams, Homework, and Grade:
65% of your grade will be determined by four
|Midterm Exam # 1
Midterm Exam # 2
|Monday 23 February (one hour, in class)
Monday 6 April (one hour, in class)
Friday 8 May, 8-10am (two hours)
35% One third of the
grade will be determined by 11 graded homework
assignments. Four of these assignments will involve
graded group work based on projects/labs.
Computer use in this course:
A CDROM called Interactive Differential Equations came with
textbook. The same functions are also available online at http://www.aw-bc.com/ide/
I will be using IDE for projects/labs, some homework, and to illustrate
|The course grade will be determined by points on the
exams and homework, according to the schedule at right --->
The schedule represents a
guarantee. Note I will use plus/minus grades as illustrated.
93 - 100 %
90 - 92 %
87 - 89 %
82 - 86 %
79 - 81 %
76 - 78 %
71 - 75 %
68 - 70 %
65 - 67 %
60 - 64 %
57 - 59 %
0 - 56 %
I also recommend that you learn how to use Matlab or Octave or another
scientific computing language. I will occasionally use such for
examples, but I will not assign it as homework.
Policies: The Department of Mathematics
and Statistics has reasonable policies on incompletes, late
withdrawals, early final examinations, etc. See www.dms.uaf.edu/dms/Policies.html
. You are covered by the UAF Student Code of
I will work with
the Office of Disabilities Services (203 WHIT, 474-7043) to provide
reasonable accommodation to student with disabilities.
Makeup exams: I will create makeup versions of Midterm
Exams I and II if necessary, provided you have a convincing reason for me to do so
you let me know at least two class
before the exam.
Other books, related courses:
A common alternate text for a course like Math 302 is Boyce &
Differential Equations. It has a more traditional,
emphasis. A completely different book is Zwillinger,
of Differential Equations. It seems at first like just a list
of differential equations, but turns out to have great explanations of
lots of methods. I also like the way Numerical Recipes explains the way
approximations to differential equations work.
Math 421 Applied Analysis covers advanced differential
(DEs), and especially partial DEs. Math 310 Numerical Analysis
for solving DEs, and Math 314 Linear Algebra covers the tools needed to
understand systems of DEs and the idea of independent solutions to
There are many applications courses that use DEs; a partial list:
ATM 401, BIOL 671, CHEM 331, CE 631, ECON 636, EE 353, EE
EE 451, EE 471, ES 301, GEOS 614, MSL 629, ME 404, ME 408, ME
409, ME 441, PETE 489, PHYS 311, PHYS 331, PHYS 651.