Math 493   Methods of Applied Mathematics I     Fall, 2013
TuTh, 1:30 - 2:45 pm;   Room: SAS 2106.

Instructor: Michael Shearer     Office: SAS 3228     Phone: 515-3298    Email:

Office Hours:: Mondays 2:30-3:00pm, Tuesdays 1:00-1:20pm, and by appointment.

Book:  Mark H. Holmes, Introduction to the Foundations of Applied Mathematics.  Springer, 2009
Available as an ebook from the NCSU library.

Prerequisite: Calculus, MA242 and ODEs, MA341, or equivalent.     

Homework, tests and final:
1. Weekly Homework Assignments (20% of final grade)   due Thursdays.
2. Two in-class exams (40%). 
3. Final Exam: (40%)  

Basic Grading Scale: 90%-100%: A, 80%-89%: B, etc.   (+ and - will also be used.)


Course Summary.  This new course is the first of  a sequence of two methods courses to be offered for the first time in academic year 2013/14.  The purpose of the course is to give you the mathematical tools to study scientific and engineering problems. In this first class, the primary topics are: Dimensional Analysis and Scaling, in which mathematical models are analyzed at a fundamental level before attempting explicit or numerical solutions; Perturbation and Asymptotic Methods, which reveal the structure of solutions without needing formulas for the solutions themselves; Balance Laws, the basis for modeling with equations; Discrete Processes (as opposed to continuous processes modeled by differential equations), which are increasingly important in applications. Each technique will be embedded in applications and examples. Prerequisites for the class are Calculus, MA242 and ODEs, MA341, or equivalent.

Additional Policies:
1. I encourage you to discuss homework with other students, or with me during office hours. You should be aware that the homework is intended for you to learn from the course; working on homework at least in part on your own will help you master the material, keep up with the course and prepare for tests. Homework will be graded on a scale of 1-10. Points will be awarded for amount of homework attempted; selected problems will be graded in detail.
2. I expect you to read sections of the book around the time of lectures and homework from those sections. The book has additional examples and discussion that you will find helpful. Some test questions may resemble examples from the book.
3. You are expected to attend all classes on time. Classroom discussion and questions in class help clarify issues in this course, so please feel free to participate by asking questions.
4. Arriving late for a class or leaving early is very disruptive of class. If you need to leave early, please let me know at the beginning of class, and sit near the door so you can slip out quietly.
5. If you are unavoidably absent from a test, a score for that test will be assessed at the end of the semester, based on your performance in homework, the other tests, and on the final, with an emphasis on the material of the missed test.  Attendance regulations can be found at

Academic Integrity Statement: Students are expected to follow university policies on academic integrity and the Honor Pledge,  which may be viewed by following the links at:

Further Statements:
Reasonable accommodations will be made for students with verifiable disabilities.  In order to take advantage of available accommodations, students must register with Disability Services for Students at 1900 Student Health Center, Campus Box 7509, 515-7653.  For more information on NC State's policy on working with students with disabilities, please see the Academic Accommodations for Students with Disabilities Regulation (REG02.20.1).