Math 4425, Fourier Series and Partial Differential Equations, Fall 2017

Instructor: Robert C. Rogers

Classroom: 240 McBryde

Time: 12:30-1:45 PM, Tuesday and Thursday

CRN: 85525

Office Hours: 9:00 -11:00 AM, M,Tu,W,F, 430 McBryde

Course Description

The course revolves around the derivation of the most important linear partial differential equations, the solution of these equations using separation of variables and Fourier series, and the analysis of those solutions. In order to do this, we will have address many issues in real analysis and linear algebra.


This course will be a rigorous test of your knowledge of both ordinary differential equations (Math 2214), multivariable calculus (2204), and sequences and series of real numbers (Math 1226). Successful completion of these courses is required. Advanced Calculus (Math 3224) is an official prerequisite. While I will not enforce this requirement, it is highly recommended.  I will teach the course in such a way that very strong students should be able to take 3224 at the same time as 4425. That is, I will "review" all necessary concepts from 3224 before using them in 4425.


We will use a draft of a text I am writing for the course. This is available in the Resources section. There will be updates of the text throughout the semester, so you may wish to read the text on the computer or print out only the material we are covering at the moment.;


Students are required to use Mathematica for computation and visualization.   Mathematica is available free to all Virginia Tech students through the Virginia Tech Computing Center.  You may download it here.  For those who do not wish to install Mathematica on their computers, it is available on all computers in the Math Emporium where it can be used without charge.

Tutorials on Mathematica are available here. 

Class Policies


There will be two midterm exams and a final exam. All students must take the final examination. This is a policy directive of the Dean of the College of Science and no exceptions can be made. The final exam will cover all material discussed in class.




The final grade will be computed as follows.

Homework          30%
Quizzes              20%		
Exam 1              15%
Exam 2              15%
Final Exam          20%

An average grade of 93% or better will guarantee at least an A, 90-92% an A-, 87-89% a B+, 83-86% a B, 80-82% a B-, 77-79% a C+, 73-76% a C, 70-72% a C-, 60% at least a D. I will try to keep you informed about any "curve" for the course, but this might change as the semester progresses. If you have questions about your grade, please come to see me.

Honor System

Special Needs

Any student with special needs or disabilities should schedule a time to see me as soon as possible.