Course Goals and Topics
- To understand the algorithms that underlie modern scientific computing, e.g., the
assumptions that underlie the algorithms, when each algorithm is applicable, and when the algorithm
is not working.
- To be able to adapt algorithms to specific problems, or put various techniques together to solve
- To understand the nature of the errors made in numerical computing, and how to control them.
- To become competent at using Matlab's numerical capabilities to analyze problems. This includes
straightforward Matlab programming.
- Exams: For in-class exams your work must be your own, of course, using only the authorized resources stated on the exam cover page. For any take-home exams you must also work individually, and ask for help or clarification only from me! As with in-class exams, use only the resources that are authorized on the exam cover page.
- Homework: You are expected/encouraged to collaborate with other students, but when the time comes to write up the homework solutions you should be able to do this on your own with complete understanding.
- If you did cooperate significantly with one or more other students please indicate this on the front page of the homework set, problem by problem if necessary, e.g., "I worked with "student A" on problems 3 and 5", "student B" on problem 14".
- Do not share "canned" computer files for solving the homework, e.g., if "student A" writes an elaborate Matlab file that solves a given homework problem, he/she should not give it to others so they can blindly push buttons and get answers! (I try not assign such problems).
- If you can't solve a given problem, just say so. It's OK.
- If you're not sure about whether what you're doing for the course is in accordance with the above, ask me!
Course Work Guidelines
- Homework is due at 5 pm on the due date---one day late is automatic half credit, after that ZERO!
- Homework should be written up neatly (even TeXed if you know how) and all pages stapled.
- Make sure it's clear what your answer is, box or highlight it when appropriate.
- If you know you're going to be gone on a given day, let me know AHEAD of time. If there's a quiz that day you can make it up ahead of time, not after (in that case, it becomes the one quiz I'll spot you.)
- If you miss class YOU are responsible for learning the material you missed. Although you can ask me specific questions about the material (see "Office Hours" below),
you cannot ask me to repeat the class for you personally---I have too many students for this to be feasible.
- We'll make heavy use of Matlab in this course. You can install it on your laptop or run it on the
workstations in G220.
- I'll send you an email on days you need to bring your computer.
- The final grade will be based 50 percent on the homework, 50 percent on the exams.
This page last updated November 12, 2011
- Come to office hours if you're confused!
- But please come somewhat prepared, having at least read the book and tried the problems. It's not very helpful if you come in and say "I don't understand anything we're doing."
- Once your questions are answered, do not sit in my office to finish your work---many other people probably want to see me.
- Coming by to talk about math not related to the course (just because it's interesting) is encouraged!