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Math 207: Elementary Linear Algebra -- Spring 2015 -- Iowa State University

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Math 207: Elementary Linear Algebra, Spring 2015

Instructor: William DeMeo
Office: Carver, Room 466.
Office hours: MW 12:30pm-2pm, and by appointment.

Lecture time and location: TTh 8-9:20am in Carver 001.

Credits: 3

(For login instructions, see the WebAssign-Instructions.)

Remarks about office hours: The regularly scheduled office hours listed above are subject to change. Changes will be announced during lecture. Office hours are the hours during which I make a point of being available in my office to answer questions. However, students are encouraged to stop by my office at anytime to see if I'm available. It is helpful (but not required) to send me an email in advance to let me know when you plan to visit.

Team Teaching

This course has two primary instructors, who design and plan the course together. This is meant to provide multiple perspectives on the course material, as well as more opportunities for contact outside of class. Both instructors have office hours and are available for email questions, regardless of which instructor provided the lecture for the material in question.


Elementary Linear Algebra (Custom Edition), by Ron Larson.


2 semesters of calculus



Blackboard is used by the profs for recording grades, posting general announcements, and emailing students.

WebAssign is an online homework system that students will use to complete homework assignments.

GitHub is used by one of the profs (DeMeo) as a convenient and reliable shared repository for storing electronic resources related to the course.

Grading Policy

Homework: 15%
Quizzes: 10%
Two Tests: 45%
Final Exam: 30%

Letter Grades: A: ≥ 91%, B: ≥ 81%, C: ≥ 71%, D: ≥ 61%, F: < 61%,


Online homework will be completed on WebAssign. See WebAssign-Instructions for registration instructions. (These instructions are also available on the Blackboard site. The due date for online homework will be midnight on the Thursday and no late homework will be accepted. The lowest homework score will be dropped at the end of the semester.

Quizzes and Exams

There will be a number of quizzes, two midterm exams, and one final exam.

  • Test 1 Chapters 1--3
    DATE: Thursday, February 19

  • Test 2 Chapters 4--5
    DATE: Thursday, April 9

  • FINAL EXAM Chapters 1--7 (cumulative)
    DATE/TIME: Friday, May 8, 7:30am--9:30am

In accordance with university policy, the final exam is mandatory and must be taken by all students at the scheduled time. Do not make travel plans before knowing the date of the final exam.

Quizzes will occur approximately once per week, on Thursdays. Generally each quiz will focus on the material covered during the preceeding week. There are no make-up quizzes or exams. The lowest quiz score will be dropped.


Students are expected to attend all classes. A grade penalty may be exacted if you have an excessive number of unexcused absences. Specifically, you are permitted (but strongly discouraged from taking) seven absences in total.

However, since Math 207 is a large lecture, and because we will have near-weekly quizzes, attendance should not be an issue for most students in this class. Usually it only comes into play at the end of the semester if a student happens to end up on the border between two letter grades. In such cases, the professor may look for things like an exemplary attendance record to justify moving the student up into the next grade category.

If you plan to leave before class is over, the correct procedure is to mention this to the professor before the start of class. It is impolite and disruptive to your classmates to leave, or even pack up your belongings, before the lecture is over.

Asking Questions

When you don't understand something even after giving it some thought, please ask a question! The best time/place to do this is during lecture or in office hours.

The second best time/place to ask a question is on our Wiki pages. Anyone can read these pages, but to edit them and ask a question there, you need to sign up for a (free) account. (This is not required, but I would highly recommend GitHub to anyone who ever works on projects involving files stored on a computer, which these days is essentially everyone. GitHub is especially good for collaborating on team projects.)

Another way to ask a question is by using the "Ask my instructor" link on WebAssign. This method is convenient for the instructor because details about the problem you're having trouble with are automatically embedded in your email.

Please note: if you use the "Ask my instructor" button, your question may appear on our wiki page (which is public). If you're uncomfortable with this, please say so in your message.

Finally, you may email the instructors directly, though the response time might be significantly slower than if you use one of the preferred methods above.

Important note about asking questions: There are no stupid questions! Students should ask about anything that seems unclear. However, questions about specific homework problems should be accompanied by evidence that the student has already given serious thought to the problem. Otherwise, the reply will usually be, "What have you tried?"

Use of Electronics During Lecture

Silence and refrain from using all electronic devices (phones, ipods, tablets, microwave ovens, etc.) during class and exam periods. The only exception to this policy is the use of computers or tablets for the purpose of referring to an electronic copy of the textbook, or the online (WebAssign) homework problems. Using a computer during lecture to check Facebook, for example, is totally unacceptable. Besides how this affects your own ability to focus on what is being taught in the lecture, computers can be very distracting to other students. Use of electronic devices in lecture for purposes unrelated to calculus will not be tolerated.

Academic Honesty

Cheating will not be tolerated. Violations of this policy will be referred to and dealt with by the ISU Office of Judicial Affairs, in a manner consistent with university regulations, which range from a warning to expulsion from the university.

Disabilities Statement

If you believe that you have a disability that qualifies under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and requires accommodations, you should contact the Student Disability Resources Office for information on appropriate policies and procedures. The Disability Resources Office is located in the Student Services Building, Room 1076; phone number: 515-294-7220. The next step is to see me. I am happy to assist with accommodations, but I will not provide them retroactively (so file the appropriate requests and paperwork before the first exam!).

Classroom Policy

In this course, we follow the general university classroom policy:

Additional Resources


Math 207: Elementary Linear Algebra -- Spring 2015 -- Iowa State University






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