Class Period: 10:00am - 10:50am MWF, Thompson Hall 316
Instructor: Mei Q. Chen

Office: Thompson Hall 328,  Office Phone: 953-7896


Course Materials

Course Outline, Lecture Notes Homework/Solutions, Exams/Solutions, MatLab Programs


Course Goals:

(1) An introduction to computer floating point number system and arithmetic.

(2) An introduction to numerical methods that are commonly used in approximating irrational numbers, root finding, curve fitting, numerical differentiation and numerical integration.

(3) An introduction to mathematical software MatLab and implementations of numerical methods in MatLab.

Textbook: Online Lecture Notes.

Grading: It is based on homework assignments, three hour exams, and a comprehensive final exam.


(1) Homework assignments: 25% of the final course grade.


 Homework will be assigned weekly.  Homework problems are designed to help you understand each numerical algorithm including its derivation, convergence and error analysis and uses in solving equations, curve fitting, numerical differentiation or integration.  The mathematical software MatLab will be used to implement numerical algorithms. 


I truly believe that completing each homework assignment is very important in the process of learning. You are encouraged to work on homework assignments in pairs or to discuss problems or work in progress with me and your classmates.


(2) Hour exams: 50% of the final course grade.


Three one-hour exams are tentatively scheduled for September 23, October 21, and November 18, respectively. It will be re-announced a week before each hour exam. Each hour exam covers the materials that have been discussed in class since last hour exam. Hour exams are designed to test your understanding of definitions, derivations of algorithms and skills of problem solving using these algorithms. You are allowed to bring 3x5 note cards with definitions, algorithms and theorems for exams (no examples please).


(3) Final exam: 25% of the final course grade.
The final exam will be comprehensive and similar to hour exams. It is scheduled at 8:00-11:00am on Thursday, December 8. You are allowed to bring 3x5 note cards with definitions, algorithms and theorems for the final exam (no examples please).


(4) Problem of Week: Two extra points will be added to the final exam score for each correct answer.


Current grades

Office Hours/ESP Study/Help Sessions:


(1) Office Hours:  1:00pm-3:00pm TR, TH 328

(2) ESP Study/Help Sessions:  8:00pm-9:30pm MR, TH 328

If you need any assistance at hours different from listed ones, please make an appointment with me by email or phone.

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Last updated: August 22, 20011.