Math343 Spring 2014

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Course Information

Description: Introduction to Linear Algebra.

Instructor: Casian Pantea. email me

Class schedule: Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays 10:30-11:20AM in Hodges Hall 316

Office hours: Mondays, Wednesdays 5-6PM, and by appointment, in Armstrong Hall 305B

Additional help: Monday-Thursday 8AM-3PM, Friday 8AM-2PM.

Info sheet containing more or less the stuff on this webpage.

Textbooks and resources


Kolman and Hill, Elementary Linear Algebra with Applications (9th edition)

Useful free resources:

Linear algebra notes

Linear Algebra Done Wrong, Treil
Linear Algebra -- wiki textbook

Web goodies

Khan Academy


Grading scheme

  • 30% Final exam on Monday December 16 2013, 3-5PM in Armstrong Hall room 112
  • 25% Each of best two midterm exams
  • 10% Homework assignments
  • 10% Quizzes
  • Letter grades will be assigned according to the scheme
A 90-100% | B 80-90% | C 70-80% | D 60-70% | F 0-60%


  • There will be six 15-minutes quizzes (one every two weeks); best five will count towards your grade.
  • Quizzes will test the material covered during the previous two weeks.
  • No make-up quizzes will be given.


  • Homework will be assigned once every two weeks, and due two weeks later (please see the course schedule below for exact dates).
  • Your best five homework papers will count towards the final grade.
  • Late turn-ins will not be accepted.


  • There will be three 50-minutes in-class midterm exams, on February 3, March 7 and April 16.
  • Midterm exams will test material covered after the previous midterm (they are not cumulative).
  • Your best two midterm exams count towards the final grade, each weighted at 25%.
  • Calculators will not be allowed.
  • No make-up midterm will be given.

Final Exam

  • Tuesday April 29 2013, 3-5PM in Hodges Hall 316.
  • Final is cumulative.

Course Schedule (subject to changes)

Date Topic Resources HW/Quiz
Jan 8 Introduction Evaluation Test
Jan 10 Systems of linear equations 1.1
Jan 13 Matrix operations 1.2 - 1.4
Jan 15 Matrix operations 1.2 - 1.4 Quiz 1 solutions
Jan 17 Matrix operations 1.2 - 1.4
Jan 22 Special types of matrices 1.5 HW1 posted
Jan 24 Matrix transformations 1.6
Jan 27 Echelon form 2.1
Jan 29 Solving linear systems 2.2 Quiz 2 solutions
Jan 31 Elementary matrices 2.3
Feb 3
Feb 5 Midterm 1 Midterm1 solutions
HW1 due
HW2 posted
Feb 7 Elementary matrices 2.3
Feb 10 Equivalent matrices; Determinants 2.4; 3.1
Feb 12 Determinants 3.1 Quiz 3 solutions
Feb 14 Properties of determinants 3.2
Feb 17 Properties of determinants 3.2
Feb 19 Cofactor expansion 3.3 HW2 due
HW3 posted
Feb 21 Inverse of a matrix 3.4
Feb 24 Other applications of determinants 3.5
Feb 26 Vectors 4.1 Quiz 4 solutions
Feb 28 Vector spaces 4.2
Mar 3 Vector spaces 4.2
Mar 5 Midterm 2 Midterm2 solutions
Mar 7 Vector spaces 4.2 HW3 due
HW4 posted
Mar 17 Subspaces 4.3
Mar 19 Span 4.4
Mar 21 Linear Independence 4.5 HW4 due
HW5 posted
Mar 24 Basis and dimension 4.6
Mar 26 Basis and dimension 4.6 Quiz 5 solutions
Mar 28 Basis and dimension 4.6
Mar 31
Apr 2 Rank 4.9 HW5 due
HW6 posted
Apr 4 Rank 4.9
Apr 7 Rank 4.9
Apr 9 Rank 4.9 Quiz 6 solutions
Apr 11 Coordinates 4.8
Apr 14 HW6 due
Apr 16 Midterm 3 Midterm3 solutions
Apr 21 Review
Apr 23 Length, direction and orthogonality in "'R"'^n 5.1, 5.3
Apr 25 Gram-Schmidt 5.4
Apr 29 Final exam 3-5PM in Hodges Hall 316

Where does your score stand?

Doing well in this class

Although the prerequisites for the class are minimal, the material is dense and not trivial, especially if you have not seen mathematical proofs before. As is often the case in math courses, we will constantly build upon previous stuff; therefore, not leaving gaps in your understanding of the material is crucial for succeeding. This will require a sustained effort on your part, and in addition to attending lectures, you are encouraged to take advantage of instructor's office hours and the drop-in Math Learning Center. Of course, this is not a substitute for also working on your own; it is essential to think about the material, read the suggested texts, and solve homework problems by yourself. This last bit is a prerequisite to being able to solve problems under the pressure of a quiz or an exam.

Accessibility Needs

If you are a person with a disability and anticipate needing any type of accommodation in order to participate in this class, please advise me and make appropriate arrangements with the Office of Disability Services (304-293-6700).