MATH 526


Numerical Linear Algebra

Spring 2011



Meeting times: MWF  10:10 - 11:00 AM  at  LeConte (LC) 112


Labs:      Section 001 - Th  9:30 - 10:20 AM  at  LeConte (LC) 303A (instructor K. Basu)

                  Section 002 - Th 11:00 - 11:50 AM  at  LeConte (LC) 303A (instructor K. Basu)



Instructor: Dr. Peter G. Binev


phones:   576-6269 (at LC 425)   or   576-6304 (at SUM 206H)

Office hoursMWF  9:00 - 10:00 AM  at LeConte 425 or by appointment



Text: Introduction to Linear Algebra by Gilbert Strang, Fourth Edition, Wellesley - Cambridge Press 2009 (


Prerequisite: MATH 241.


Learning Outcomes: At the end of this course students will be able to read, interpret, and use vocabulary, symbolism, and basic definitions from Linear Algebra. The students will be able to use facts, formulas, and techniques learned in this course and to apply numerical algorithms to various types of problems including Gauss elimination, iterative methods; overdetermined systems and least squares; eigenvalues, eigenvectors.


Attendance: Regular class attendance is important. A grade penalty will be applied to any student missing five or more classes (10%) during the semester. The "10 percent rule" stated above applies to both excused and unexcused absences. Students who anticipate potential excessive absences due to participation in permissible events as described in the USC Academic Bulletins ( should receive prior approval from the instructor to potentially avoid such penalty.


Cell Phones: All cell phones must be turned off during the class.


Homework: A few homework problems will be assigned each class. Be sure to solve these problems before the next class. The quizzes will be based on these problems.


Quizzes: At the end of some lectures there will be 5-minute quizzes based on the homework problems assigned in the previous classes. The quizzes will be graded with “pass” (1 pt) or “fail” (0 pt). Two of the failed quizzes will be dropped and the results of the rest will constitute the “Quiz Grade”. There will be no make-up quizzes.


Midterm Exam: There will be a midterm exam in a form of a test. The tentative date of the exam is February 18, 2011. There will be no make-up for this exam.


Projects: Every student has to choose a project motivated by the topics discussed in the course. Several possible themes for the projects can be taken from Chapters 8 and 10 of the textbook. In addition, the instructor will suggest other topics in the length of the course. The project should consist of 1-page description and a program written in MATLAB demonstrating the chosen topic. The projects are individual and should be submitted in class (or via e-mail) on or before April 18, 2011.


Graduate Students: The projects for the graduate students will be in a form of a research paper (5 to 10 pages long) discussing the development of a chosen topic from Numerical Linear Algebra. The paper should be accompanied by software demonstrating the topic and should be submitted in class (or via e-mail) on or before April 18, 2011.


Labs: This course include one-hour computer lab on Thursdays. The purpose of this lab is to introduce the students to MATLAB and in the same time to provide computational experience with some of the topics discussed in the lectures. See the syllabus for the labs for more information. The grade assigned by the labs instructor will count for 20% of the final grade.


Final Exam: The final exam in a form of a test will take place on Wednesday, May 4 at 9:00 AM.


Grading (undergraduates): The final grade will be determined from the quizzes (20%), the midterm exam (20%), the project (10%), the lab grade (20%), and the final (30%).


Grading (graduate students): The final grade will be determined from the quizzes (10%), the midterm exam (20%), the paper (20%), the lab grade (20%), and the final (30%).


Academic Dishonesty: Cheating and plagiarism will not be allowed. The University of South Carolina has clearly articulated its policy governing academic integrity and students are encouraged to carefully review the policy on the Honor Code in the Carolina Community (


ADA: If you have special needs as addressed by the Americans with Disabilities Act and need any assistance, please notify the instructor immediately.


Web Materials: The author of the textbook maintains a webpage


Important Dates:                January 14 – Last day to drop without W

                                          February 18 – Midterm Exam

                                          February 28 – Last day to drop without WF

                                          March 5 -13 – Spring Break

                                          April 18 – Deadline to submit the projects

                                          April 25 – Last day of classes

                                          May 4 – Final Exam at 9:00 AM