MATH 3303 Ordinary Differential Equations

Fall Semester 2002




       Michele L. Joyner

            Mathematics Department

Boyd 309

Phone: tba

Office hours: Mon, Wed. 1:00-4:00; Tues. 9:00-12:00; Fri. 1:00-2:00, or by appointment


Credit Hours: 3


Course Description:


Modeling with and solutions of ordinary differential equations, including operators, Laplace transforms, and series; systems of ODE’s; and numerical approximations.


Learning Outcomes:


¨              The student will be identify the order and linearity of a differential equation. (L1, L5, L9)

¨              The student will be able to solve a first order equation by separation of variables. (L1, L8)

¨              The student will be able to solve a linear first order equation using an integrating factor to make it exact. (L1, L8)

¨              The student will be able to solve a linear, constant coefficient, homogeneous, higher order equation by finding the characteristic roots. (L1, L8)

¨              The student will be able to solve an inhomogeneous equation using undetermined coefficients or variation of parameter. (L1, L8, L9)

¨              The student will be able to find power series solutions of linear equations with or without singularities. (L1, L8, L9)

¨              The student will be able to solve systems of linear equations by elimination or by finding eigenvalues of the coefficient matrix. (L1, L8, L9)

¨              The students will be able to efficiently use computer resources to solve ordinary differential equations. (L8, L9)

¨              The students will be able to analyze the solutions of a differential equation model and compare to data to discern the validity of a model and will present their findings in a organized, well-written form. (L1, L4, L8, L9)




            Dennis G. Zill, A First Course in Differential Equations The Classic Fifth Edition, Brooks/Cole,





            Math 2644 (Calculus II) or consent of department


Requirements and Grading:


¨     Exams: There will be three 1 hour tests worth 100 points each:

Test 1: Wednesday, September 18

Test 2: Monday, October 21

Test 3: Monday, November 25


¨     Final Exam: There will be one comprehensive 2 hour final exam worth 200 points:

Wednesday, December 11, 11a.m -1 p.m.


¨     Computer Assignments: The computer will be used as a supplemental technique to aid in the learning of ordinary differential equations. All programming will be done using the Maple software package. Maple provides a convenient interface to symbolic, numerical, and graphical interpretations of a variety of mathematical objects. There will be a total of six Maple assignments given out over the course of the semester which will be handed in and graded. The assignments will be geared towards helping you learn how computers can be an asset in the study of ordinary differential equations as well as give you an opportunity to apply ordinary differential equations to “real-world” applications. You are allowed to work in groups of two or three to complete these assignments with only ONE write-up handed in with all names of the people in the group listed on it. Every person in the group will receive the same grade. Note that you are NOT required to work in groups, but it may ease the learning and help make learning and completing the assignments more fun. The grades from the six assignments will be averaged and converted to a 100-point basis (equivalent to one test). The approximate due dates for the assignments are listed below (subject to change based on the speed of the course):

Maple Assignment #1: Due Friday, September 6

Maple Assignment #2: Due Monday, September 23

Maple Assignment #3: Due Wednesday, October 9

Maple Assignment #4: Due Monday, October 28

Maple Assignment #5: Due Wednesday, November 13

Maple Assignment #6: Due Monday, December 2


¨     Quizzes: There will be a total of ten 10 minute unannounced pop-quizzes of which the two lowest scores will be dropped. The remaining quizzes will be averaged and converted to a 50 point basis (equivalent to half of a test score).


¨     Homework: This is an important part of the course. There will be no homework assignments to be handed in. However, at the end of most classes you will be given a list of problems – these are the minimum that you should work. Some of these problems will be gone over in the next class session, and the quizzes will be very similar to assigned homework problems. Practice is important. You should make sure to set aside some time every class day to work problems.


¨     Grading: My grading scale is straightforward. There are a total of 650 possible points. Your total number of points will be calculated and converted to a percentage. The grading scale is listed below with the total points required in parenthesis:

A(excellent) = 90-100%                (585 – 650 points)

B(good) = 80-89%                       (520 – 579 points)

C(adequate) = 70-79%                  (455 – 514 points)

D(poor) = 60-69%                       (390 – 449 points)

F(dismal) = 59% and below          (384 points or below)




No make-up quizzes will be given. Except in extreme circumstances, any missed exam must be

made up within one week of the day the exam was given. There must be a reasonable excuse for

missing the exam and the excuse must be in writing. Maple assignments are to be collected on the

date announced. The assignments will be given out with plenty of time to complete. Late

assignments will only be accepted under extreme circumstances upon my approval.


Attendance Policy:


            There is no penalty for excessive absences, but good attendance will be used to determine

            borderline grades. If a class is missed, the student is responsible for all material and assignments.

            Remember quizzes can not be made up.






Students with documented disabilities (through West Georgia’s Disability Services) will be given

all reasonable accommodations.  Students must take the responsibility to make their disability

known and request academic adjustments or auxiliary aids.  Adjustments needed in relation to test-

taking must be brought to the instructor's attention well in advance of the test (at least one week



Academic honesty:


            Students are expected to achieve and maintain the highest standards of academic honesty and

            excellence as described in the Undergraduate Catalog. In short, be responsible and do your own

            work. Instances of academic dishonesty will be handled accordingly.


Other Important Dates:


         Last day to withdrawal with grade of W is October 10.


Proposed Course Schedule (Tentative):


Date                              Sections                                    Date                              Sections

(M)       August 19          1.1                                (M)       October 21          Test #2

(W)           August 21          1.1                                (W)       October 23          6.1

(F)             August 23          1.2                                (F)        October 25          6.1, 6.2


(M)           August 26          2.1, 2.2                           (M)       October 28          6.2, 6.3 – Maple #4 Due

(W)           August 28          2.2, 2.3                           (W)       October 30          6.4

(F)             August 30          2.3                                (F)        November 1         6.4


(M)           September 2         Labor Day – no classes      (M)       November 4         6.5

(W)           September 4         2.4                                (W)       November 6         8.3

(F)             September 6         2.5 – Maple #1 Due                       (F)        November 8         8.4


(M)           September 9         2.5                                (M)       November 11       8.5

(W)           September 11       3.2                                (W)       November 13       8.5 – Maple #5 Due

(F)             September 13       3.3                                (F)        November 15       8.6


(M)           September 16       Review                          (M)       November 18       8.6

(W)           September 18       Test #1                           (W)       November 20       8.8

(F)             September 20       4.1                                (F)        November 22       Review


(M)           September 23       4.1 – Maple #2 Due                       (M)       November 25       Test #3

(W)           September 25       4.2                                (W)       November 27       No classes

(F)             September 27       4.3                                (F)        November 29       No classes


(M)           September 30       4.3                                (M)       December 2         8.9 – Maple #6 Due

(W)           October 2                       4.4                                (W)       December 4         Review

(F)             October 4                       4.4                                (F)        December 6         Reading Day


(M)           October 7                       4.7                                (M)       December 9        

(W)           October 9                       5.1 – Maple #3 Due                       (W)       December 11        Final Exam 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

(F)             October 11          5.2                                (F)        December 13       


(M)           October 14          5.3

(W)           October 16          5.4

(F)        October 18          Review