Welcome to Jacob’s Online Help Desk for Math 133 Linear Algebra and Geometry at McGill (Fall 2020) taught by Profs. Rosalie Bélanger-Rioux, Florian Dr Aigner &nd Gavin Ball. Here you can get in touch with me and find information about my sessions.
- Everything you need you know about Math 133
Math 133 is a great class to teach because a good teacher with the right approach can make a huge difference. The class consists of learning certain problem-solving skills in what appear to be ~5 different but loosely related areas: matrix algebra; vector geometry; linear operators; sets and spanning and linear dependence. You might not have too much difficulty with these isolated topics; however, in the last month, they are all brought together and you are expected to relate each section to all of the others, effortlessly – a skill which requires a much more thorough understanding than the basic problem-solving skills required to handle each section, individually.
As a result, when the end of the semester arrives, you can feel blindsided by the subtlety of this class, when there is not a lot of time to revisit early topics and stress-levels are high. In light of this common experience, I like to introduce concepts and vocabulary from all the sections right from the start of the course. This way, by the time the toughest topics arrive, you are already familiar with them and generally don’t struggle at all.
Linear algebra is usually your first taste of a more conceptual-class. It may seem very removed from the real world and without practical application, but in reality, it’s just the opposite: the foundation laid in this class will provide insight in many other classes, including Math 222, Math 262, Math 263, Math 315 etc. It is the language of quantum mechanics and computer science and finds practical application in nearly every domain. A class well worth mastering.
If you are already managing to find answers or even doing well in the class, I’ll help you develop your mathematical reasoning and help you focus on the most important concepts; concepts which will return over and over (and over!) again in future classes (Math 222, Math 262, Math 263, Math 264, Math 314, Math 315 etc). Without someone to help you identify this important material, it’s easy to get lost in the large mass of topics. Not to mention that it feels great to get to later classes and have the content seem easier and easier while everyone else is struggling more and more. It all starts with this class!
- About Math 133 sessions with Jacob
My Math 133 sessions will help you master the concepts and theory presented in the course lectures. They include detailed, typeset notes that explain the terminology and notation. The notes are carefully designed as interactive documents that provide you with a chance to engage the material during the session so you can test your understanding, and also include representative, fully-solved problems and additional practice problems.
During our time working together, we will look at detailed, developed solutions, meant to illustrate different aspects of the material in a systematic, structured and easy-to-follow approach. Solutions are colour-coded to make it easy for you to see through the barrage of symbols and focus on the key concepts. It’ll also help you learn to structure your answers efficiently and effectively, so that the logic of the solution is clear to you (and the marker!).