# 21-260: Differential Equations

## Description

The subject of differential equations can be described as the study of
equations involving derivatives. It can also be described as the study of
anything that changes. The reason for this goes back to differential calculus,
where one learns that the derivative of a function describes the rate of
change of the function. Thus any quantity that varies can be described by an
equation involving its derivative, whether the quantity is a
position, velocity, temperature, population or volume.
There are three main ways to study differential equations. There are analytic
methods, wherein a mathematical formula for a solution of a differential
equation is obtained. There are Numerical techniques, which provide an
approximate solution, generally using a computer or programmable calculator.
Differential Equations can also be studied qualitatively, determining
general properties of solution without concern for exact behavior.

In this course, we will emphasize analytic methods, though qualitative and
numerical techniques will make brief appearances. Students who are interested
in qualitative and numerical approaches should consider taking
21-124: Modeling with Differential
Equations.
This is a 3-credit course, meeting once
each week on Thursdays.

##
Textbook

The text for this course is *Differential Equations and Boundary Value
Problems* by C. Henry Edwards and David E. Penny.

## Instructor

Dr. David Handron
Office: WeH 6121
e-mail: handron@andrew.cmu.edu
Telephone: 268-5913
Office Hours: 3:30-4:30 Monday, or by appointment.

## Teaching Assistants

Cristina Popovici
Office: WeH 6213
e-mail: cristina@andrew.cmu.edu
Telephone: 268-6828
Office Hours: 4:30-6:30 Tuesday
Adrian Tudorascu

Office:
e-mail: adriant@andrew.cmu.edu
Telephone:
Office Hours:
Ben Kane

Office:
e-mail: bkane@andrew.cmu.edu
Telephone:
Office Hours: 1:30-2:30 M, 2:30-4:00 Th