MAP 2302 – Elementary Ordinary Differential Equations

Credit hours: 3
Textbook: Dennis G. Zill and Warren S. Wright, Differential Equations with Boundary Value Problems, Eighth Edition, Brooks/Cole Publishing Company, 2013.
Prerequisites: the calculus sequence
Grading System : Exams: 3 midterms (20% each) – after Chapters 3, 5 and 7, respectively; 1 final (40%) – cumulative
Homework assignments are not graded, but it is essential that you do them thoroughly in order to be in a position to do well on the exams.
A: 90-100, B: 80-89, C: 65-79, D: 50-64, E: 0-49
Minus grades will not be used in this course.
Note: No calculators may be used during exams.

Office hours: MWF, seventh period (or by appointment)
See Home Page for contact information (and more).

Brief Course Description

The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the study of ordinary differential equations, which are used to describe the evolution and behavior of physical processes in most fields of scientific endeavor, from physics and engineering to economics and sociology. The primary intent of the course is to communicate how to solve large classes of ordinary differential equations either explicitly or implicitly, including (among others) linear ordinary differential equations of second order (with constant coefficients), many nonlinear equations of first order, and some special classes of nonlinear second-order equations. Methods of solution include integrating factors, changing variables, the method of undetermined coefficients, the method of variation of parameters, the method of Laplace transforms, and power series methods. We shall illustrate these techniques on real problems from physics and engineering. Most of Chapters 1-7 of the text will be covered (see below).

The student will be expected both to grasp the conceptual structure which will be constructed to the ends stated above, as well as to master the computations which are involved.

The material to be covered includes (Chapters refer to above-named text):

Chapter 1: Sections 1.1-1.3

Chapter 2: Sections 2.2-2.5

Chapter 3: Section 3.1

First Midterm Examination: in class on February 17

Chapter 4: Sections 4.1-4.4, 4.6-4.7

Chapter 5: Section 5.1

Second Midterm Examination: in class on March 23

Chapter 7: Sections 7.1-7.5

Third Midterm Examination: in class on April 6

Chapter 6: Sections 6.1-6.4

Final Examination: in the usual classroom at 12:30-2:30 p.m. on Monday, April 25


Current Assignment

– This assignment should be done by Wednesday, April 20, 2016. You do not hand in the homework to be graded. We are currently covering Section 6.3 of the text. The course meets eighth period, Monday, Wednesday and Friday, in Little 127.

NOTE: The final examination, covering Sections 1.1-1.3, 2.2-2.5, 3.1, 4.1-4.4, 4.6-4.7, 5.1, 7.1-7.3, 7.4.1, 7.5, and 6.1-6.3 of the text, will be held in our regular classroom at 12:30-2:30 p.m. on Monday, April 25. Special pre-exam office hours will be held that day beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Please note: The publishers of our textbook are offering materials online at extra cost. I and most of my colleagues shall not be using the publishers’ product Webassign at all. I have no access codes to give you nor shall I familiarize myself with their software.

Note: Tutors are available at the Broward Tutoring Lab; look here for the schedule. They may be useful if you are weak in computation. But any conceptual problems with the material in the course should be brought to me.


Previous Homework Assignments

University Honor Code: “UF students are bound by The Honor Pledge which states, “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honor and integrity by abiding by the Honor Code. On all work submitted for credit by students at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied: “On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment.” The Honor Code specifies a number of behaviors that are in violation of this code and the possible sanctions. Furthermore, you are obligated to report any condition that facilitates academic misconduct to appropriate personnel. If you have any questions or concerns, please consult with the instructor or TAs in this class.”

My policy on class attendance: I do not take a roll call, but it is inadvisable to miss class because I do not merely repeat nor do I examine only what is in the text. If you miss a class, it is your responsibility to find out what happened in class.

My policy on make-up work: There is no opportunity for make-up work afforded to you, unless your absence is an excused one according to the current definition of “excused absence” made by the university. If the latter definition applies to the situation, then you will come to me and we will work out a mutually convenient arrangement. Except in the case of a documented medical emergency, this must be done in advance.

University policy on the accomodation for disabled students:

“Students with disabilities requesting accommodations should first register with the Disability Resource Center (352-392-8565, by providing appropriate documentation. Once registered, students will receive an accommodation letter which must be presented to the instructor when requesting accommodations. Students with disabilities should follow this procedure as early as possible in the semester.”

An accomodation will then be worked out within the bounds of the possible with the aim of assuring that the disabled student will be able to benefit fully from the course.


Be sure to see:

  • The Math Forum Resource Center, on differential equations, with many links, problems and software.