Final Project Guidelines

by Dr. Sarah Greenwald

Mat 2240 - Linear Algebra

April, 2001

Introduction

Background Material

Examples

Applications to Real Life

Conclusion

References

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The above is an example of a possible format for your final project (one per group).

Your report should be in Maple, but may have different sections and subsections than this.

To create the sections (the boxes with the plus signs next to them), in Maple, under Insert, release on Section. You can also create subsections. Then, you can open the sections by clicking on the plus sign, and close the section by clicking on the minus sign that appears when one is open.

Anything that you way in your presentation should be in text comments somewhere in your report, and your report will be much more substantial than your presentation.

Your Maple worksheet should include all of your work, with detailed explanations (ie it should be self explanatory). It needs to be in your own words. If you take a quote from somewhere, then you need to give reference where it is due.

Your presentation ( 4-7 minutes in length total - practice the length carefully!) will summarize the highlights of your project and will give a brief overview.

Your project will be graded based on the depth of the mathematics, and the clarity (spelling counts too!) of your explanations.

During the final exam period, we will go over presentations and do course evaluations of Dr. Sarah. I will provide some snacks, but you should bring something to drink for yourself. If you wish to bring snacks to share

with the class, that would be nice too!

Below is what you would see when you opened each of the above section - (the copy above and below is just for your benefit so that you can see what they look like open and closed. You should just have one copy in your project, which is closed).

Introduction

Your introduction must explain what your final project is about, and summarize the contents of the rest of the sections.

Background Material

This section should explain any background material that is necessary. It should also summarize important ideas from class that are necessary. For example, if your project uses eigenvalues, then you should summarize how to find them.

Examples

This section should contain detailed examples of how matrices / linear algebra are used for your topic. Different examples should be located within different subsections.

Applications to Real Life

This section should summarize applications of your topic to real life in detail. It should also address the importance of matrices within the context of these real life applications. It should also give a description of how people (in real life) find the matrices that they need / or solve for the information they need given the matrices. It should also list problems and difficulties that people encounter using the matrices in the application, and any other topics of interest that give us a sense of the real-life context.

Conclusion

This section should contain a conclusion of your project. It might also contain questions / ideas for further exploration.

References

This section must contain a list of references and web reference addresses. In addition, after each reference, you need to summarize (in your own words) what is contained within each reference and how you used it.

You should spend a reasonable amount of time on your final project, but you should not spend excessive time on your project. For example, you might find that your original goal is unobtainable. That is ok. The purpose of this report is for you to research an area that is interesting and related to linear algebra, and report back to us on what you were able to find in your own words. Depth of content does matter, but you should not feel as if your project needs to contain everything there is to say on the subject (this would be impossible to do for many of the topics). You might wish to include a section on what you thought you might find before you started out, and how it differed from what you actually ended up doing.

I am happy to give your feedback if you bring your work into office hours.