Math 20D - Introduction to Differential Equations

Main lecture B00: MWF 11:00am - 11:50am, Center Hall 115

Online class discussion:

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See the homework page for homework assignments.

Study guides / Exam solutions:

Study guide for exam 1

Study guide for exam 2


The standard textbook for the class is Elementary Differential Equations and Boundary Value Problems by Boyce and DiPrima (Ninth Edition). You should have access to this book.

For most (but not all) lectures and most homework problems, I will be using my free textbook which you can download at Lectures will be done very closely to this book except for series solutions. There will be up to 3% extra credit for useful feedback on this book.

Here is a draft of the Power series chapter that will go into my book within the next few weeks. I may have to catch some of the bugs.


Jiří Lebl
Office: 7151 AP&M
Office hours: MW 1:00pm-2:30pm and at other times by appointment
Office phone: x42644


B01-B03: Patrick Cesarz
Office: 6446 AP&M
Office hours: Tu 12-2pm in 6446, and Tu 2-4pm in the Matlab room.

B04-B06: Janelle Louie
Office: 6432 AP&M
Office hours: M 2-3 in Matlab room, and W 2-4 in APM 6432


Grades will be based on the percentages below. Curve will be applied if needed.

Exam 1: Monday, October 25, 20% of your grade.

Exam 2: Monday, November 22, 20% of your grade.

Final Exam: Tuesday, December 7, 11:30am - 2:29pm, 40% of your grade.

Homework: Assigned weekly (some weeks may be skipped). Worth 10%, possibly spot checked (spot checked means: some spot(s) of each homework checked, and all will be collected). Lowest homework grade dropped.

Matlab Assignments/Quiz: See Worth 10%. There are 4 assignments worth 1% each and a quiz worth 6%. The quiz is on November 30th, see the page above, specifically here.

Test Policies: No books, notes, calculators or computers allowed on the exams or the final.


Chapters from my book are marked with L, chapters from Boyce and DiPrima are marked with BD. This is very approximate and we will not cover everything in every chapter.

Introduction (1 hour) [L chapter 0 (0.2), BD chapter 1]
First order ODEs (5 lectures) [L chapter 1 (1.1,1.2,1.3,1.4,1.6), BD chapter 2]
Second order linear ODEs (7 lectures) [L chapter 2 (2.1,2.2,2.3,2.4,2.5), BD chapter 3]
Systems of ODEs (7 lectures) [L chapter 3 (3.1,3.2,3.3,3.4,3.5,only multiplicity 2 defect 1 from 3.7,3.8 covered lightly, only undetermined coefficients from 3.9), BD chapter 7]
Power series (2 lectures) [BD chapter 5]
Laplace transform (4 lectures) [L chapter 6 (6.1,6.2,6.3?), BD chapter 6]

Useful links:

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