MATH 246, Differential Equations for Scientists and Engineers

Fall, 2002

Instructor: Konstantina Trivisa:
Office: 4103 Mathematics Bldg
Phone: (301) 405-5067
Office Hours: Tu, Th 10:00 - 11:15 or by appointment.

Course Description: Math246 is an introduction to ordinary differential equations. The course introduces the basic techniques for solving and/or analyzing first and second order differential equations, both linear and nonlinear, and systems of differential equations. Emphasis is placed on qualitative and numerical methods, as well as on formula solutions. The use of a mathematical software system (MSS), either Mathematica or MATLAB, is an integral and substantial part of the course.


MATH 141 or equivalent.

Main Text:
  • Elementary Differential Equations by Boyce and DiPrima
  • Differential Equations with MATLAB, by Coombes, Hunt, Lipsman, Osborn and Stuck, published by J. Wiley.
    Class Time: Tuesday and Thursday: 12:30am - 13:45pm.

    Location: MTH 1308.

    Homework and Quizzes: Homework will be assigned once a week but not collected. Short quizzes will be given in class based on the homework. There will be given approximately ten quizzes during the semester from which only the best eight will count towards your grade. Missing two or scoring low on them will not count against you, therefore there will be no make-up quizzes.

    MATLAB: MATLAB is available in all WAM labs and on the GLUE system and it will be a very useful addition in our course. There will be four MATLAB assignments. Students are encouraged to work in small teams but must turn in individual reports. Little class time will be spent on MATLAB; students must master the required software on their own, using Coombes at al.

    Midterms: There will be given three one-hour exams. The exact date will be announced in class.

    There are no makeups for tests or quizzes.

    Final Exam: A common final exam will be held on the week of Dec 16 - Dec 21. The exact date will be announced shortly.

    Grading: Quizzes 5%, Midterms 15% each, Computer Problem sets 20%, Final exam 30%.