Math 336 - Mathematical Modeling
Spring Semester, 2007

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San Diego State University -- This page last updated 25-Jan-07


Course Information for Math 336

Joseph M. Mahaffy

Introduction to Math 336

This course introduces mathematical modeling using the text listed above and a collection of material that I have developed and will post on this website. The course begins by examining discrete dynamical systems, then progresses through a variety of mathematical techniques applied to many areas in the sciences. My particular interest is mathematical biology, so there will be a stronger emphasis on the applications to biology. Good mathematical modeling requires a broad spectrum of mathematics and an open mind to using many techniques. Thus, this course provides an excellent way to review many methods that you have learned in the past.

The grading of this course will be based on your performance on the homework assignments, exams, and a project. I have yet to determine the weighting of each of these, but your homework will be a major portion of the grade (40-60%), so it is important to keep current on assignments. There will be a penalty for homework that is late. Homework will be due on Friday (usually), and late homework will be assessed a 20% penalty for unexcused late work up until the homeworks are returned to class, after which homework will not be accepted. At present, I am planning 2 exams and a final. You will write a project based on your interests that will be due near the end of the semester.

Mathematical modeling

The diagram above shows the basics of how you should visualize mathematical modeling as you cycle between the real world, the mathematical model, and empirical data.