21-260: Differential Equations
DescriptionThe 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.
NewsFriday, May 10: A Review Session will be held on Sunday, May 12 from 6:00-7:30pm in DH 2315.
Friday, May 10: Solutions to HW#14 and HW#15 are available outside Dr. Handron's office door.
Monday, May 6: Here is my schedule for Office Hours during finals period:
Monday, April 29: The reading and homework assignment for Week #15 have been posted.
Wednesday, April 24: The reading and homework assignment for Week #14 have been posted.
Friday, April 19: Solutions to HW#10-HW#13 are available outside my office door.
Wednesday, April 17: A study guide for Exam #3 has been posted on the schedule page.
Sunday, March 31: The reading assignment for Week #12 has been posted.
Thursday, March 28: I will not hold office hours on Friday, March 29 (the day before spring break).
Wednesday, March 27: The homework assignment for Week #11 has been abbreviated. You need not do any of the problems from Section 6.2.
Monday, March 25: Want to know where you stand in the class? Here is the grade distribution for Exam #2.
Friday, March 22: The reading and homework assignment for Week #11 have been posted.
Tuesday, March 19: The time and place for Exam #2 have been changed. The exam will be given during your regular class time in The UC-CcConomy Auditorium.
Friday, March 15: Solutions to the homework for Weeks #6-#9 are available outside my office door.
Monday, March 11: The reading and homework assignments for Week #9 have been posted. The reading for Wednesday includes this matrix algebra handout.
Friday, March 1 The reading assignment and homework assignment for Week #8 have been posted.
Monday, February 25: The reacing and homework assignments for Week #7 have been posted.
Monday, February 25: Want to know where you stand in the class? Here is the grade distribution for Exam #1.
Monday, February 18: Traian Pirvu's students can pick up their graded homeworks on Tuesday, February 19 between 12:00 and 2:00pm.
Monday, February 18: A review session for Exam #1 will be held on Tuesday Feb 19 from 6:30-8:00 in DH 2315.
Monday, February 18: A short review of matrix algebra is available for downloading (pdf). You should take a look at it before we get to Chapter 5 in the text.
Sunday, February 17: The reading assignment and (short) homework assignment for Week #6 have been posted.
Friday, February 15: Solutions to the first five homework assignments are available outside my office door.
Wednesday, February 13: A review sheet for the first exam has been posted. It is available from the schedule page.
Friday, February 8: The reading and homework assignments for Week #5 have been posted.
Friday, February 8: The mid-term exams have been scheduled. The days are as announced earlier, February 20, March 20 and April 24. The exams will be given in the morning - 7:30 AM to 8:20 AM - in DH 2210 and DH 2315.
Wednesday, February 6: The homework assignment has been modified, removing problems from Section 3.6 (which we have not yet covered) and adding problems from Section 3.4 (which we have covered). Sorry for the inconvenience.
Tuesday, Frbruary 5: A Calculator was left in BH A51 on Monday after the 10:30 class. If it is yours please come identify it.
Monday, February 4: The 12:30 section of the optional matrix algebra Recitations has been canceled. The meeting times will now be:
Friday, January 25: The reading and homework assignments for week #3 have been posted.
Friday, January 18: The optional matrix algebra Recitations will begin on Tuesday, January 22. There will be four sessions that first day, one corresponding to each of the usual Recitation timeslots, as follows:
Tuesday, January 15: The Staff page has been updated to reflect last-minute changes in TA assignments.
Monday, January 14: Welcome to 21-260 Differential Equations. The first homework assignment has been posted. You may access the homework assignments from the Schedule page, which may be found by clicking the button to the left.