Revised Syllabus for Math 314: Linear Algebra

Spring 2007, UAF, Bueler

Instructor: Ed Bueler
Office: Chapman 301C.
Office hours:  MW 2:15--3:15, F 9:15--10:15
Phone: 474-7693    eMail:
Class Time:  MWF 10:30am-11:30am
         Room:  Bunnell 410
Text: Kolman and Hill, Elementary Linear Algebra, 8th ed.
Web Site:

Course Description:   
    TOPICS: Linear equations, finite dimensional vector spaces, matrices, determinants, linear transformations and characteristic values. Inner product spaces.
     SECTIONS OF TEXTBOOK:  I hope to cover 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, 3.8, 4.1, 4.3, 4.4, 4.6, 5.1, 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 6.1, 6.2, 6.3, 6.4, 6.6, 7.1, 7.2, 7.3, 7.4, and 8.1.  (
It is a lot!  There are 43 regular class periods for these 38 sections, so you can see the necessary pace.Chapter 9 is a Matlab tutorial.  Chapter 10 has Matlab exercises, and I will assign some of these.
      The in-class portion of the course will consist primarily of my lecture.  Early in the course I will do some Matlab tutorial in class.  Matlab is widely available on UAF computers, including in the Bunnell, Chapman, and Duckering labs, and is available in a $109 student version for your own computer.
       Homework, which will be graded and returned promptly, will be your way of knowing whether you are following the ideas.  The homework will include computations (both by-hand and in Matlab), proofs, and explanations.  You will be expected to write clear and grammatical English when proving and explaining.
      A draft day-by-day schedule is on the course webpage at

The Grade:  70% of your grade will be determined by three exams, with the remainder determined by weekly homework:
20 %
20 %
30 %
30 %
Midterm I
Midterm II
Final Exam
Weekly Homework
Monday, February 19 (one hour in class)
Monday, April 2 (one hour in class)
Wednesday, May 9  10:15am-12:15 (two hours)

The first Midterm will be entirely in-class, and computers and calculators will not be allowed.  The second Midterm will have a take-home part, for which you will need to use Matlab or other computing machinery, but on the in-class part you will again not be allowed to use a computer/calculator.  The Final will be like Midterm II: there will be a Matlab take-home part and a no-computer in-class part at the regular final time.
    The course grade will be determined by your total on the above according to the following schedule:

90 - 100 % 
79 - 89 % 
68 - 78 % 
57 - 67 % 
0 - 56 % 

    Math 201 Calculus II.  (This is a maturity and not a content prerequisite.)

Policies (including homework deadlines and makeup exams):   The department has policies on incompletes, late withdrawals, and early final examinations; see You are covered by the UAF Honor Code. I will work with the Office of Disabilities Services (203 WHIT, 474-7043) to provide reasonable accommodation to student with disabilities.
      Homework is due on the date stated at the beginning of class.  Late homework will not be accepted.  I will create makeup versions of midterm exams provided I have a very convincing reason to do so.  A request for a makeup exam must be given at least three class days before the exam.  The makeup must occur no later than three class days after the exam date. 

MATLAB:   Matlab makes vector and matrix operations very easy as it is designed for such tasks.  Learning to use it is strongly recommended, and I will assign problems which will be easy in Matlab, harder using other computing resources (good calculators or Mathematica or Mathcad, etc.), and essentially impossible by hand.  Note I will also assign a lot of by-hand problems on homework, and all of the in-class exam problems will be by-hand.  Wise students will learn to use Matlab partly by checking their by-hand calculations whenever possible.  UAF has a campus-wide site license so you should be able to use it for free.
     I don’t assume that you are familiar with Matlab already. For the first few weeks of the course I will offer a tutorial in class to help you get started. In fact on the first three Fridays I plan to hold class in the Chapman 103 lab.  See for a brief online tutorial and some links.