Course Exam—Math 270 (Linear Algebra)

MATH 270 (Linear Algebra I) is a three-credit introductory mathematics course that is suggested for students in the Bachelor of Science programs.  This course covers systems of linear equations, matrices, inverse of a matrix, determinant, vectors in two-, three- and n-dimensions, Euclidean and general vector spaces, and applications of linear algebra.

There is a Mathematics Diagnostic Assessment that students can take to test their readiness for this course and other math courses offered at Athabasca University.  This online test contains 70 questions that will help you assess your mathematical skills.  Based on your score, it will recommend which Athabasca University mathematics course you are likely ready to take successfully.  MATH 270 is not available for challenge.

Linear Algebra I is made up of five units, five assignments weighing a total of fifteen percent, a midterm examination weighing thirty-five percent, and a final examination worth fifty percent.  Students should note calculators are not allowed during either of the examinations.  Throughout this course, students will learn a lot of interesting material, such as how to solve systems of linear equations, calculate basic matrix operations, solve applied linear algebra problems, and much more.  To receive credit for MATH 270, students must achieve a course composite mark of at least a “D” or fifty percent in the course, with at least a grade of fifty percent on the final examination.

Karen Fletcher is currently enrolled in Athabasca University’s Bachelor of Science program, with a major in Mathematics.  She began by providing an introduction, stating “I own a small business that provides knitting patterns to publications and yarn companies and returned to school last year to pursue a math degree.  I love sewing my own clothes, have three kids and am in Ottawa, Canada.”

When asked to explain the course to other students, she explains that “Math 270 is a basic linear algebra class that focuses on solving linear systems.  You cover matrices, plus eigenvalues and eigenspaces.  One of my favorite parts was that each unit concluded with a section explaining the real-world application of the math taught in that section.”

As for the structure of the course, she states that “There were five math assignments, plus a midterm, and final exam.  The midterm was a standard paper exam (I wrote before the pandemic) that reasonably covered the material.  Due to the fact that it’s hard to type out the answers to math questions the final is currently made up of several math questions you do in advance, and then you have to explain your process for solving them as well as why you felt the course was relevant over a video call, then your tutor will ask you questions about various concepts in the course.  I thought the final exam covered relevant material but as someone who struggles to come up with words right away, I found having to speak on the spot challenging.”

Karen would recommend this course to other students, stating that she “thought the course was well laid out and I liked the fact that the textbook came with a student solution manual.”

When asked if she had any tips or tricks to completing this course, she states that she “found the course was fairly straightforward, as long as you pace yourself and keep on track with the study guide, I think you’ll be fine.”

As for communications with her tutor, Karen states “My tutor was Arzu.  He was amazing at taking time to explain concepts to me when I got stuck.  He was very friendly and encouraging.”

Whether MATH 270 is a degree or program requirement of yours, or the topics mentioned above are of interest to you, this course will have you learning a lot of interesting material surrounding the topic of linear algebra.

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