MTH 309 Introduction to Linear Algebra

Section X, Spring 2018

Scores and course grades

If you see any errors here, please let me know right away.

All scores (updated 6:45pm, May 23)

Final Exam

Thursday, May 17, 8:00-11:00am, NSC 210


Classroom change May 1-11

Because another instructor is having surgery and won't be able to climb stairs, we will be swapping classroom from Tuesday, May 1 through the end of the semester. The new room will be O'Brian 112.

Homework assignments


Note that as a rule, webwork sets on textbook chapter sections discussed in class by Thursday will be due by 11:59pm the next day (i.e. Friday).

Webwork online homework


Day 1 boards

Day 2 boards. Notes on echelon forms and row reduction

Day 3 boards. row echelon forms with Python

Day 4 boards. Day 4 prepared materials

Day 5 boards. Day 5 outline.

For Recitations Week 3: Illustration of transformations R2 to R2: (now works properly on Macs too).


Day 6 boards.

Day 7 boards. Day 7 outline.

Day 8 boards. Day 8 outline.

2.8 & 2.9. Day 9 boards. Day 9 outline. Day 9 Jupyter notebook.

3.1 & 3.2 Day 10 boards. Day 10 outline. SVG file

3.3 & 4.1 Cramer's rule, abstract vector spaces. Day 11 boards. Day 11 outline.

4.2 & 4.3 Day 12 outline, Day 12 boards.

4.3 & 4.4 Day 13 outline, Day 13 boards.

4.5, 4.6, 4.7 Day 14 outline, Day 14 boards, Day 14 notebook (matrix with small column space).

4.8, 4.9 Day 15 outline, Day 15 boards

5.1 Eigenvectors and eigenvalues Day 16 outline, Day 16 boards,

5.2 Characteristic polynomial, similarity, Day 17 boards.

5.3 Diagonalization, Day 18 boards.

5.5, Complex eigenvalues, cont'd, dynamical systems. Day 19 boards.

5.6, 6.1. Dynamical systems, inner product. Day 20 outline, Day 20 boards. code to make rats-and-owl pictures.

April 17: Exam, coinage, 6.1. Day 21 outline, Day 21 boards.

April 19: 6.2, Day 22 outline, Day 22 boards.

April 24: 6.3, 6.4 Day 23 outline, Day 23 boards.

April 26: 6.4, 6.5, 6.6 Day 24 outline, Day 24 boards. QR factorization example, linear regression example.

May 1: Move to O'Brian 112. 6.7 Inner product spaces, 7.1. Day 25 outline, Day 25 boards.

May 3: 7.1, 7.2. Day 26 outline, Day 26 boards. Visualization of quadratic forms

May 8: 7.4 SVD. Day 27 outline. Day 27 boards.

May 10: 7.5 Application of SVD: PCA. Day 28 outline. Day 28 boards. Day 28 PCA.

Policies and syllabus

Policies and other course information


Final exam


Emphasis will be on material from 5.4 on. But nothing is off-limits.

Review session

Monday, May 14, 2018, 5pm in Math Bldg Room 150.

Midterm exam #2


7-9pm, Thursday, April 12. Knox 20 (same as the first one).

Coverage and preparation

The exam will cover sections 2.3, 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, Ch 3 (all sections), Ch 4 (all sections), 5.1-5.3.

Midterm exam #1


The first mid-term exam will be held on the evening of Thursday, March 1, from 7:00-9:00pm in Knox 20. Please show up about 5 minutes before the start so you can be seated and ready to begin right at 7. Just FYI, all sections of MTH 309 will be there: about 400 students in the one room. There will be assigned seating: you will look for the exam paper with your UBIT username on it in large type. The exam papers, which will be on QR-coded white paper, will be laid out in alphabetical order by UBIT username, but interleaved with those of the other sections (which will be on different colors).

Coverage and preparation

The exam will cover sections 1.1-2.2.

Start by reviewing the homework (both Webwork and the paper-and-pencil-and-computer ones). Then try to answer some other exercises from the book (odd-numbered ones have answers in the back of the book). Read sections of the text as needed. Problems on exam will be similar to homework except that in those that require the use of a computer, that part will already be done for you. No calculators allowed.

Discussion forum



Anaconda distribution of Python (3.6). No prior experience with Python is expected.

The module

Exercise for Week 2. See also coal plant problem for how to enter non-integer data as fractions.