Instructor: Dr. Jessica M. Conway.

Lectures: MWF 11:15-12:05, 107 Sackett.

Office hours: McAllister 332, Mondays 1:30-2:30pm + by appointment.

Email: jmconway (at) psu (dot) edu

Phone: (814)863-9125

Available HERE.

No required text. We'll be drawing material from a number of sources. A few recommended textbooks that will offer alternative perspectives on the material and may improve your understanding:

This course will incorporate computer programming of models using the python computer language. Python is a free and widely used language, so the skills you gain with it will be valuable long after you leave PSU.

We will be using Canopy, which is free for academic use, available for Windows, Mac, and Linux platforms, and encapsulates all the standard python modules for easy install. Download, install, and try it out, first chance you get. You can get a free academic license for the full version, or download Canopy Express, which has fewer packages, without a license.

Students are encouraged to type up their homework assignment. LaTeX is an excellent option; LyX is a nice LaTeX front-end.

A few LaTeX resources: The five minute guide to LaTeX, some tutorials, a helpful lab (mac/linux) from PSU's applied math REU, wikibooks on LaTeX.

And if there's ever a symbol that you need to find the LaTeX symbol for, try Detexify!

For students using LaTeX, here's the easy way to include your code: the listings package. Put

\usepackage{listings}

in the preamble and then

\lstinputlisting{relative filepath/source_filename.py}

in the document. Will automatically embed the code without your having to copy/paste!

Also works in LyX: add \usepackage{listings} in the preamble, available in Document->Settings, then use ctrl+L to insert latex directly and, in the box that's generated, add \lstinputlisting{relative filepath/source_filename.py}.

Here's a LaTeX template for your homework, if you find it helpful. Corresponding .pdf output.

Final projects will be along the lines of the problems in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling, although not all problems there will be projects, and there may be others available.

You may work alone or in pairs.

Potential projects: link. Let me know your choice by

Evaluation will be based on a written report, an oral presentation (15 min), and a mid-point peer review. We'll discuss further details on Friday March 17.

Final project guidelines: link

Jessica M. Conway / Department of Mathematics / Pennsylvania State University