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What to brush up on before taking Differential Equations?

  1. Feb 7, 2009 #1
    Unfortunately, I'll probably have to wait until the Fall to take it. I've taken Cal I-III and took Linear Algebra this past fall.

    What specifically in Calculus (besides the short differential equations) should I review?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 8, 2009 #2
    Eigenvalue problems, vector valued functions, and taking derivatives/integrals. That's pretty much all differential equations is based on. Most of the techniques you'd actually use in the class will be new to you.
  4. Feb 8, 2009 #3
    pde's or ode's? I can see eigenvalue stuff in the pde's but if it's just an intro diffy q class you won't see alot of linear algebra (you will see some, like linear independence/dependence and matrix determinants and a few other things), you'll want to review alot of integral methods from calculus II
  5. Feb 8, 2009 #4
    MATH 3331: Differential Equations
    Cr. 3. (3-0). Prerequisites: MATH 2433 and MATH 2331 (formerly 2431). Systems of ordinary differential equations; existence, uniqueness and stability of solutions; initial value problems; bifurcation theory; Jordan form; higher order equations; Laplace transforms. Computer assignments are required.
  6. Feb 8, 2009 #5


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    What they don't tell you shackel is you want to know your integration techniques from Calc 2. Know that like the back of your hand.

    edit: I'm taking the class right now, also clope said this first :)
  7. Feb 8, 2009 #6
    Looks like I'll have to bust out my notes. All the integration techniques or a few in particular?
  8. Feb 8, 2009 #7
    integration by parts, trig integration, and partial fractions you'll probably see the most; be able to recognize when one is done too cause the steps aren't always shown; oh also series
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2009
  9. Feb 9, 2009 #8
    Well, I guess it depends on your school. We used eigenvalues extensively in my intro diff eqs class, to linearize nonlinear systems.
  10. Feb 9, 2009 #9
    I'm pretty much at the same point having taken Calculus I-III and Linear Algebra, but I'm taking Diff-EQ now. Our teacher went over a list of techniques that we should review the first day of class. One that caught my eye was partial fractions - something we spent 1/2 a lecture on in Calculus II that I had to review. It's really just algebraic manipulation, but funny how many people said they had to review the process the following class.
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