Department of Mathematics

some math pictures
Math 460: Mathematical Modeling


Prerequisites & Bulletin Description


Course Objectives

The principal aim of Mathematical Modeling is for students to learn the methods for representing specific real-world systems by mathematical constructs. Students who successfully complete this course should:

  • Understand the basic principals of mechanical vibrations, population dynamics, and traffic flow.
  • Be capable of solving first order linear partial differential equations, in particular equations modeling wave phenomena; be capable of presenting qualitative information concerning non-linear wave equations.
  • Be capable of linearizing non-linear systems of equations and determining the stability properties of equilibria.
  • Approximating the properties of targeted real-world systems from the properties of their appropriate mathematical models.
  • Evaluation of Students

    Students will be graded on their ability to devise, organize and present complete solutions to problems written in correct mathematical English. While instructors may design their own methods of evaluating student performance, these methods must include in-class examinations, graded homework assignments and a final exam.

    Course Outline

    Topics Number of Weeks
    Mechanical Vibrations & Phase Plane Analysis 4 weeks
    Population Dynamics 3 weeks
    Partial Differential Equations: 1st & 2nd order wave equations 3 weeks
    Traffic flow 4 weeks

    Textbooks & Software

    Mathematical Models, by Richard Haberman. Partial Differential Equations for Scientists and Engineers, by Stanley Farlow.

    Submitted by: David Ellis
    Date: 22 September 2006

SF State Home