Math 134, Fall 2019

ODEs and Dynamical Systems


Lecture time and location

Section 1: MW 10:30-11:45 in MH 423

Section 2: MW 3:00-4:15 in MH 424


Math 32 and Math 129A (with a grade of "C-" or better in each) or instructor consent.


Office hours

MW 9:45 - 10:30 AM and 2:00-2:45 PM

Required textbook

M. W. Hirsch, S. Smale, and R. L. Devaney: Differential Equations, Dynamical Systems and an Introduction to Chaos, third edition, Academic Press (Elsevier), 2013

Additional reading

S. N. Simic, Ordinary Differential Equations, lecture notes, posted on Piazza


There will be weekly homework assignments. You are welcome to work on the homework collaboratively with other students, but you should write up your own solutions independently. The homework will not be collected or graded, but you absolutely MUST do the homework to pass or do well in this class. I will provide solutions to all homework problems.



For each homework there will be a 10 minute quiz, given on the day the homework is due. Each quiz will consist of a single problem taken from the corresponding homework assignment.


There will be one midterm and a final exam. There will be no make-up exams. Please mark your calendars:

Midterm: October 16, 2019

Final: Section 1, December 12, 2019, 9:45 - 12:00. 

Section 2, December 17, 2019, 12:15 - 2:30


Grading policy

Quizzes 20%, Midterm 35%, Final 45%



To handle questions posed outside of class, we will be using Piazza (, a free platform for instructors and GSIs to efficiently manage out-of-class Q&A. On the class dashboard, students can post questions and collaborate Wikipedia-style to edit responses to these questions. Instructors can also answer questions, endorse student answers, and edit or delete any posted content. Instead of emailing me math questions, I encourage you to post them to Piazza. Each student will be invited to join Piazza by email. Please join it as soon as you can, as I plan to use Piazza extensively.
Instead of sending me email, please create a post on Piazza with your question or concern. Private or anonymous post are fine, though they should be used rarely.



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