Math 308 - SPRING 2003

Mathematics for the Physical Sciences

Mo We Fr 2-3 pm, in Cupples I, room 111.

Instructor phone office e-mail office hours
Renato Feres 5-6752 Cupples I 17 M Tu W Th 3-4 (also by appoint.)

The textbook is: Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences - 2/ed, by Mary L. Boas (Wiley).

I'll try to follow the lesson schedule closely, but there may be (hopefully) small deviations along the course. The weekly homework assignment will be posted on the lesson schedule at least a week before its due date. The suggested problems will not be collected for grade, but it is important that you work on them regularly. I will often use problems from the suggested problems list as examples to discuss in class, so that you may find it helpful to look at them even before the lecture. The more interesting ones may appear as well as homework problems. Although the homework assignments will contain much fewer questions, you should have worked on as many of the suggested problems as possible by the day of each exam.

You are expected to write your homework assigments carefully and neatly. Any calculation that you didn't do on your head or calculator, (or for which the average human being would need an explanation) should be written explicitly and the conclusions should be stated clearly. My assumption while grading them will be that you can only show how clearly you think about math by how clearly you write your math ideas. This is not to say that you are expected to write a lot: writing math is more like poetry than prose. (I'll try to live up to all this in the lectures ...)

Exams, except for the final, will be given in class. The dates are given on the lesson schedule. They are one hour long each. (The final is 2 hours long.) Your grade will be calculated according to the following recipe: replace the lowest mid-term exam score with the score of the final exam (unless the former is greater than the latter), and add the four exams and total homework score, all with equal weight.

The grade scale will be decided at the very end. It won't be, however, worse than the following.

Here are the Math 308 exam I gave last year: