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Differential Equations Prerequisites

  1. Oct 9, 2008 #1
    What are the Prerequisites for taking a Differential Equations course? I am thinking of taking it over summer 09'. I have Calc AB, BC (highschool) under my belt. Will I be ok?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 9, 2008 #2
    heh... at my school you need calc I and II. Then you need multivariable calculus, an analysis course, a discrete mathematics class and linear algebra. I imagine, though, that our program is slightly more rigorous.
  4. Oct 10, 2008 #3
    If you can do integrals, derivatives, and find eigenvalues then you can take intro diff eq.
  5. Oct 10, 2008 #4
    Would the OP have done eigenvalues (linear algebra) in Calc AB and BC? I'm not sure what the system's like in the States, but my guess is that it's a no?
  6. Oct 10, 2008 #5
    In my DE intro class, we only NEEDED Calc I-II. You can probably get away with now knowing how to find eigenvalues. If it's not taught in the class ( it was in mine, very briefly ), it's easy enough to learn on your own.
  7. Oct 10, 2008 #6


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    While it is not necessary to mention eigenvalues in an introductory course, the entire theory behind "linear differential equations" is Linear Algebra. You can learn how to solve differential equations without it but if you want to UNDERSTAND the subject, you really need Linear Algebra and Multi-variable Calculus as pre-requisites.
  8. Oct 11, 2008 #7
    Yeah if you don't know how to find eigenvalues, the amount of linear algebra it will take to do so will take a few hours at most.
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