Friday, July 25, 2014

Teaching a Modern ODE Course

Attending MAA MathFest 2014 in Portland, Oregon? Stop by this informational session on teaching a modern ODE course.

Hilton and Executive Tower
22nd Floor
Mount St. Helens Suite
Friday, August 8

The differential equations course has changed radically over the last quarter century.  Easy access to powerful computation has enabled visualization to play a much larger role. The increasing mathematization of the life sciences has greatly expanded the kinds of models available for investigation. The advent of dynamical systems has made new kinds of questions imaginable and accessible. A modern ODE course has to take all this progress into account, though it is perhaps not clear exactly how to do so.  Anne NoonburgUniversity of Hartford and author of OrdinaryDifferential Equations from Calculus to Dynamical Systems―and Steve Kennedy―Carleton College and MAA Books Sr. Acquisitions Editorwill lead a discussion focused on how best to react to these changes in your ODE course. We will ask such questions as:
  • What is the appropriate role of modeling in the ODE course?
  • How do we balance the needs of physics, biology and engineering majors in the course?
  • What are good sources of deep and interesting models?
  • How much emphasis on numerical methods is appropriate?
  • Similarly how much dynamical systems theory and visualization?
  • What is the appropriate role of technology and what are good choices?
  • Is a Linear Algebra prerequisite necessary, or can the needed material fit in the ODE course?

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