Course Syllabus MATH 3260
Differential Equations II
Spring Semester 2009

Meeting times:

Tu, Thu 9:40 - 11:05.


Kirksey Old Main Building, Room 205


Jan Zijlstra, Ph.D.

Office :
Web Materials:

Kirksey Old Main 257    (615) 898-2691/5422

Office Hours:

  • Monday : 8:30 - 11:00 and 12:30 - 2:30

  • Tuesday: 8:30 - 9:30

  • Wednesday: 8:30 - 11:00 and 12:30 - 2:30

  • Thursday: 8:30 - 9:30 and 11:00 - 12:30

  • Friday: 8:30 - 11:00 and 12:30 - 2:30
     Other times by appointment, please.

Prerequisite: Math 3110 (Calculus III) and Math 3120 (DE I) must have been completed with a grade of C or better.
Note: Contact your instructor immediately if this requirement has not been met.
Textbook: Nagle, Saff and Snider: Fundmentals of Differential Equations with Boundary Value Problems. 5th ed.
          Addison Wesley Publ., 2007. (ISBN-10: 0321419219)
    Note: If you decide to go with the 4th Ed. (ISBN-10: 0321145712
), you are responsible for matching the materials and exercises assigned in this class.
Additional Reading: David L. Powers: Boundary Value Problems, Fourth Edition (ISBN-10: 0125637349)
Calculator: Texas Instruments 83/84 (plus) graphing calculator.
Miscellaneous: Engineering pad, straight-edge and compasses and pens in three different colors.
Main Topics:<
  • The focus of this course are boundary value problems for the heat, wave and potential equations.
    To approach these problems, we will need to review the theory of infinite series and develop the notion of orthogonal sets of functions.
    The Fourier Series arising from this will be our major tool in solving problems associated with the buckling of a column, heat flow in a rod/plate, vibration in strings/membranes, and potential in a rectangular region. The Fourier integral is introduced to attack problems on (semi-)infinite domains. The method of Green's Functions will be introduced to solve classical problems.
    Lastly, the Laplace Transform is discussed in connection with partial differential equations. The methods mentioned will be compared and conditions for their use will be established.
Grading and Scale : Approx. 3 Exams : 100 points each
Approx. 6 Labs/Quizzes :  40 - 60 points each 
Comprehensive Final Exam: 200 points

A: 100-90, B+: 89-87, B:86-83, B-: 82-80, C+: 79-77, C:76-73, C-: 72-70
D+: 69-67, D:66-63, D-: 62-60, F: < 60 points.

Absences: Missed quizzes cannot be made up.  Labs will not be accepted past the due date and time.
Tests can be made up only with a Valid University Excuse, see Student Handbook for details.
  • Recommended self-study time is a minimum of twice class meeting times, approx. 8 hours per week.
  • If you have a disability that may require assistance or accomodation, or you have questions related to accomodations for  testing, note-takers, readers, etc., please contact me as soon as possible. You may also contact the Office of Disabled Student Services (898-2783) with questions about such services.
  • To retain Tennessee Education Lottery Scholarship (TELS) eligibility, you must earn a cumulative TELS GPA of 2.75 after 24 attempted hours and a cumulative TELS GPA of 3.0 thereafter. A grade of C, D, F, or I in this class may negatively impact TELS eligibility. Dropping a class after 14 days may also impact eligibility. If you withdraw from this class and it results in an enrollment status of less than full time, you may lose eligibility for your lottery scholarship. For additional lottery scholarship rules please refer to your Lottery Statement of Understanding form, review lottery scholarship requirements on the web at, or contact the MTSU financial aid office at 898-2830.
January 15: First Day of Classes
January 19: MLK Day - no Classes
January 28: Last day to drop without a grade.
March 9 - 14: Spring Break, no classes.
March 4: Last day to drop with a 'W'. No 'W' will be granted after this date.
April 22: Deadline to withdraw from the University i.e. from all classes
April 29: Last Day of Classes.
Final Exam: Tuesday May 5, 10:00 - 12:00