Math 207
Matrices and Linear Algebra
Fritz Keinert
Spring 2019


Fritz Keinert

Fritz Keinert
Department of Mathematics
464 Carver Hall
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011
phone: (515) 294-5223
fax: (515) 294-5454
home page:

Office hours: MF 2-3pm, W 12-1pm, Th 9-10am, or by appointment

About My Section of Math 207

Math 207 is a multi-section course with a course coordinator. The course coordinator decides all details of the course (material to be covered, exam dates, percentage of the grade determined by each exam, etc.) Thus, all the instructors will have identical policies. These are described in the Math 207 Common Syllabus. For convenience, I have also put them into this web page.

For this semester, all sections will have individual exams during the semester, but a common final exam. The exams in the various sections will be similar to each other, but not identical, since they are given at different times. All exams, except for the final, are on Fridays during class time.

I don't use the gradebook in either MyLab or Canvas. Instead, I will post a spreadsheet in Canvas after every exam. The students who don't come to class to pick up their exams will not have their scores posted. They will have to come to one of my office hours to find out how they are doing.

Make-up Exams

The common syllabus does not go into details about make-up exams very much, so let me spell that out here. In all cases, it is expected that documentation will be provided if requested, and in the case of a foreseeable conflict you contact your instructor beforehand, not afterwards. Chances are that if you are gone on a Friday only, your make-up exam will be the day before.

There are 3 situations where the instructor is required to give a make-up exam. They are

There are 3 further situations where the instructor is encouraged, but not required, to give a make-up exam. They are

And, of course, there is the catch-all situation where you simply ask your instructor for a make-up for an event that does not fall into these categories. For example, a job interview, a wedding, a non-official competition. What is definitely NOT in this category is "I want to leave early for spring break or at the end of the semester".


The rest of this web page contains the Math 207 Common Syllabus, and is the same for every section of Math 207


Thomas' CalculusLay - Linear Algebra, 5th Edition
ISBN: 978-0321982384

Students also need to purchase an access code for MyLab, an online homework system from Pearson Publishing. MyLab contains an electronic copy of the textbook.

If I understand the description of the Immediate Access Program correctly, it works like this: you can sign up for this program (follow the instructions in the link above), and the cost of MyLab will show up on your U-Bill. If you drop the course within 10 days, you will get an automatic refund. Also, after a couple of weeks you can get a loose-leaf version of the textbook if you want (for extra cost).

Alternatively, you can buy the book separately (if you want), or the access code to MyLab separately, but then you can't get a refund if you drop the course. If you are repeating this course and have bought MyLab access before, you will not need another code.


A scientific calculator is required for this course. Also, if you wish to purchase a simple graphing calculator, it would be helpful for many problems.

Course Description and Prerequisites

(3-0) Cr. 3. F.S.SS.
Prereq: 2 semesters of calculus
Systems of linear equations, determinants, vector spaces, linear transformations, orthogonality, least-squares methods, eigenvalues and eigenvectors. Emphasis on applications and techniques. Only one of MATH 207 and MATH 317 may be counted toward graduation.

Learning Outcomes

The following are the aspects of linear algebra that all students should be able to demonstrate.

Learning Objectives

Systems of Linear Equations

Matrix Algebra and Determinants

Vector Spaces

Linear Transformations

Inner Product Spaces

Eigenvalues and Eigenvectors

Grading Categories/Weighting

Online Homework: 10% (lowest 2 dropped)
Quizzes (10): 10% (lowest 2 dropped)
Unit Exams (3): 20% each
Final Exam: 20%

Final Grade Curving

Individual assignments will not be curved in the course. However, at the end of the semester, there will be a final curve for each section of MATH 207 individually. After instituting the curve, the median score in the section should be a C+. Also, final grades weighted according to the scale given above will be no worse than if they were measured on a 10% per letter grade grading scale, with the plus or minus grade at the top or bottom 3% of the range respectively. (e.g. 90%+ =A, 80%-89.99% = B, etc.)

Classroom Policies

You are required to come to class every day, however you are not required to notify us for a class absence. If you are unable to attend any of the unit exams or the final exam due to an emergency, you MUST provide written documentation of the event before an alternate exam is administered (e.g. if you are sick, get a note from a doctor). If the conflict is foreseeable, you are required to inform the instructor beforehand, not afterwards. Your make-up exam may occur before the scheduled date in this case.

Please silence all mobile devices before the beginning of class (if you must take an emergency call leave the classroom discreetly). Do not utilize any mobile music device while in class, it tends to distract other students and shows an extreme lack of respect.

Late Work

Not accepted, aside from makeup exams subject to restrictions here:

Extra Help

If you need extra help in any aspect of this course, you have several options – some are better than others.  First and foremost, come to either instructor’s office hours regularly and ask questions.  If you cannot make it to our office hours, send us an email and schedule an appointment.  We will make every possible effort to find a time to help you.  You can also send short questions via e-mail.  Other resources should be utilized as much as possible, you can link to their page from here:


The following is a proposed schedule of events corresponding to a fifteen week course with homework due for each chapter on the Pearson online homework system MyLab Math (previously named MyMathLab) and three unit exams. Time can be made for in class quizzes or out of class quizzes on MyLab.

Week and Dates Special
Sections Covered Assignments Due Tests
Week 1 (Jan 14-18)   1.1-1.4   none
Week 2 (Jan 21-25) No class Monday
(MLK Day)
1.5-1.7 1.1-1.4 Quiz 1
Week 3 (Jan 28-Feb 1)   1.8,1.9, 2.1 1.5-1.7 Quiz 2
Week 4 (Feb 4-8)  


1.8,1.9, 2.1

Quiz 3

Week 5 (Feb 11-15) Review for
Exam 1



Exam 1

Week 6 (Feb 18-22)  



Quiz 4

Week 7 (Feb 25-Mar 1)




Quiz 5

Week 8 (Mar 4-8)  



Quiz 6

Week 9 (Mar 11-15) Review for
Exam 2



Exam 2

Spring Break
Week 10 (Mar 25-29)  



Quiz 7

Week 11 (Apr 1-5)  

5.4, 5.5, 6.1


Quiz 8

Week 12 (Apr 8-12)  


5.4, 5.5, 6.1

Quiz 9

Week 13 (Apr 15-19)  

6.5, 6.6, 7.1


Quiz 10

Week 14 (Apr 22-26) Review for
Exam 3


6.5,6.6, 7.1, 7.2

Exam 3

Week 15 (Apr 29-May 3)

Dead Week

(additional topic which will not be on the final)



Week 16 (May 6-10) Finals Week     Final Exam
Time and Place to be determined

What follows is a list of topics which address standards of practice which are near uniform throughout the university and are included here to ensure you know this course follows those standards.

Academic Dishonesty

The class will follow Iowa State University’s policy on academic dishonesty.  Anyone suspected of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Students Office. See

Disability Accommodations

This course complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act and Sect 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. If you have a disability and anticipate needing accommodations in this course, please read the Math Student Disability Accommodation Policy and contact your primary instructor as soon as you become aware of your need (even if you have not yet obtained all the documentation). Requests for accommodations that are retroactive to contacting your primary instructor will not be honored.

You will need to obtain a SAN form with recommendations for accommodations from the Disability Resources Office, located in Room 1076 on the main floor of the Student Services Building. Please call them at 515-294-7220 or email

Dead Week

This class follows the Iowa State University Dead Week policy as noted in section 10.6.4 of the Faculty Handbook

Harassment and Discrimination

Iowa State University strives to maintain our campus as a place of work and study for faculty, staff, and students that is free of all forms of prohibited discrimination and harassment based upon race, ethnicity, sex (including sexual assault), pregnancy, color, religion, national origin, physical or mental disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, or status as a U.S. veteran. Any student who has concerns about such behavior should contact his/her instructor, Student Assistance at 515-294-1020 or email, or the Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance at 515-294-7612.

Religious Accommodation

If an academic or work requirement conflicts with your religious practices and/or observances, you may request reasonable accommodations. Your request must be in writing, and your instructor or supervisor will review the request.  You or your instructor may also seek assistance from the Dean of Students Office or the Office of Equal Opportunity and Compliance.

Contact Information

If you are experiencing, or have experienced, a problem with any of the above issues, email

Last Updated: January 12, 2019