Linear algebra part 1

This is the page for 2015. For the 2016 page see here.

e-study-guide page


Retake grades are here.

The final grades for the course are here. Grades are from 1 to 10, 6 and higher is passing grade. Generally the grades were very good, well done!

Change in course format

Please note that this year there will be weekly tests in the Werkcolleges, which will count towards your final grade. A sample test can be found here. Bring a soft pencil and an eraser to every test.

Teacher: David Holmes.

Teaching assistents: Jan Willem van Beek, Willem Schouten, Floris Ruijter, Eric Siero


For the course "Linear algebra" (Lineaire Algebra) there are lectures ("Hoorcolleges") and exercise classes ("Werkcolleges"). In each werkcollege the last 20 minutes will be a test on the material from the course up to that point. This will count towards your final grade.

The first lecture is on Monday 26 October at 11:15 in room B02 (Snellius).

The first test is during the werkcollege on Thursday 29 October at 11:15 in room B02 (Snellius).

See timetable here.

Required Literature

We will follow closely parts of the book "Linear algebra and its applications" by David Lay. Every student will need a copy of the book; for example, weekly exercises will be set from the book, and the tests will contain similar questions.

Where and when?



Weekly tests

As noted above, there will be a short test held every week during the Werkcollege. You can see a sample of the test here. Bring a soft pencil and an eraser to every test.


There is one exam for the course, after the end of the course (on Friday 19 December). The exam will last ? hours. It will cover material from the whole course, including that already covered in the weekly tests.

Calculating the final grade

Firstly, the weekly tests. There will be 7 tests in total. Your best 5 marks will count. Write W for the average of your best 5 tests. Write E for your grade on the final exam.

The total examination grade is is then the weighted average:

Final grade = 0.25*W + 0.75 * E.

Homework and classes

Each week, some problems from the book will be suggested. These will not be graded, and will not count towards the final grade. However, you are extremely strongly recommended to attempt all the problems - the problems in the short tests and the final exam will be similar, and past experience suggests that ability to do he homework problems is a very strong predictor of success in the course. The problems will be discussed during the classes, and you will have the opportunity to obtain help on problems you found difficult.

Office hours

Office hours of the lecturer will be from 10:00 -11:00 on Mondays (or by appointment) in room 233 in Snellius.

Content and detailed timetable

The first column is the date of the monday of the week (note the lectures are on Mondays and the exercise classes are on thursdays). The second column refers to chapters of the course book "Linear algebra and its applications" [Lay]. The final column contains the reccomended exercises from [loc.cit]; `H1.1:4,8' means exercises 4 and 8 from the end of chapter 1.1 of the book. Because many students have different versions of the book, this year I have copied the exercises into a pdf file (with link below) so that everyone is doing the same exercises, regardless of which edition they have.
Week begins Lecture Homework
26/10/2015 1.1, 1.2 Homework questions
2/11/2015 1.2, 1.3, 1.4 Homework questions, Extra sheet on spans
9/11/2015 1.4, 1.5, 1.6 Netwerks, 1.7 Homework questions
16/11/2015 1.7, 1.8, 1.9 Homework questions
23/11/2015 1.9, 2.1, 2.2 (first page only) Homework questions
30/11/2015 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3 but NOT Cramer's rule or a formula for A inverse Homework questions Attempt the practise exam.
6/12/2015 If you missed the lecture, read the notes. Homework questions Attempt another practise exam (you will also need this) ready for Thursday. There will also be a test on Thursday as usual. Revise for the exam!
--> At present this timetable is only approximate, and will be updated during the semester.


Course website for two years ago.

Course website for three years ago.

David Holmes <>