Math 2a
Differential Equations, Probability, and Statistics
Fall 2014-15
MWF 10:00 // 22 Gates
Policies | Textbooks | Lecture Notes | Handouts | Homework | Sections

Instructor: Matilde Marcolli 162 Sloan, 626-395-4326,
Office Hours: TBA
Lead TA: Marius Lemm, 156 Sloan, 626-395-6805, mlemm
Office Hours:
Sundays, 5:30 PM
Course Secretary: Kristy Aubry,




Section 1 - Andrei Frimu
Office hours: Sundays, 3:00 PM
155 Sloan, 626-395- 4081
9:00 AM, Thurs

151 Sloan
Section 2 - Jim Tao
Office hours: Sundays, 10:00 AM
155 Sloan, 626-395- 4081
9:00 AM, Thurs

153 Sloan
Section 3 - Karlming Chen
Office hours: Saturdays, 6:00 PM
155 Sloan, 626-395- 4081
10:00 AM, Thurs

151 Sloan
Section 4 - Pooya Vahidi Ferdowsi
Office hours: Fridays, 6:00 PM
155 Sloan, 626-395- 4081
10:00 AM, Thurs

153 Sloan
Section 5 -  Marius Lemm*
Office hours: Sundays, 5:30 PM
156 Sloan, 626-395- 6805
10:00 AM, Thurs

159 Sloan
Section 6 - Nathan Lawless
Office hours: Sundays, 4:00 PM
155 Sloan, 626-395- 4081
11:00 AM, Thurs

151 Sloan
Section 7 - Dmitri Gekhtman
Office hours: Sundays, 3:00 PM
155 Sloan, 626-395- 4081
1:00 PM, Thurs

115 Beckman
Section 8 - Corina Panda
Office hours: Saturdays, 10:00 AM
385 Sloan, 626-395- 1732
1:00 PM, Thurs

102 Steele
Section 10 - Lei Fu
Office hours: Sundays, 2 PM
353 Sloan, 626-395- 1731
2:00 PM, Thurs

22 Gates

Course Description

The course is aimed at providing an introduction to the theory of ordinary differential equations, with a particular emphasis on equations with well known applications ranging from physics to population dynamics. The material covered includes some existence and uniqueness results, first order linear equations and systems, exact equations, linear equations with constant coefficients, series solutions, regular singular equations, Laplace transform, and methods for the study of nonlinear equations (equilibria, stability, predator-prey equations, periodic solutions and limiting cycles).


There will be 8 homework assignments.

Homework will be posted on the web at least a week in advance and is due by 12pm (noon) in the appropriate box outside Room 253 Sloan. Solutions will be posted on the webpage.

Exams: There will be an open book, no collaboration 4 hr. midterm exam and a final

Grading: 50% homework, 20% midterm, 30% final.

Collaboration: Is allowed on the homework but not, of course, on the exams. Occasional homework problems might also require that you do them without help from others. In any case, the write-up must reflect your own understanding and not be copied.

Computers: You are allowed (and encouraged) to use a computer for the analysis of vector and direction fields unless the opposite is explicitly stated. You may not use a computer to find formula solutions.

Late Policy: Late homework is accepted at most twice during the term at the discretion of the TA. Note that fatigue, forgetfulness, etc. are not generally grounds for accepting late homework. Late exams will not be accepted except under exceptional circumstances, such as prolonged illness and a note from the Dean.

Recitations: Go to the recitations! Each week, a portion of the recitation will be dedicated to introducing some computational (or even theoretical) aspect which the Instructor will not have time to present in class. In general, get to know your TA and bug him/her to death (figuratively speaking) with your questions, and try to fill in all the holes in your understanding of the subject.


  • An Introduction to Ordinary Differential Equations, 3rd edition, by James C. Robinson, Cambridge Press ISBN: 0521533910

    We shall treat most topics covered in the textbook. However, certain topics might be treated differently in class than they are in the book, and it is the material from class that you are assumed to know for the midterm and final.

Lecture Notes

Date Description


Date Description


Due Date Homework  Solutions
October 6 @ 12 PM
Homework 1

October 13 @ 12 PM
Homework 2

October 20 @ 12 PM
Homework 3

October 27 @ 12 PM
Homework 4

Nov. 10 @ 12 PM
Homework 5

Nov. 17 @ 12 PM
Homework 6

Nov 24 @ 12 PM
Homework 7

Dec 2 @ 12PM
Homework 8

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