Syllabus for MAT-321



This course provides the basics and applications of matrix theory and linear algebra. Emphasis is given to topics that will be useful in other disciplines, including vector spaces, linear transformations, inner products, matrix representations, binary and quadratic forms, eigenvectors, and functions of matrices.


  1. Matrices
  2. Systems of Equations
  3. Determinants
  4. Vector Spaces
  5. Linear Transformations
  6. Orthogonality
  7. Eigenvalues


After completing this course, you should be able to:


You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the University’s textbook supplier, MBS Direct.

Required Textbooks

ISBN-13: 978-1305658004

ISBN-13: 978-1305658028

The author of the textbook also provides fully worked-out solutions to odd-numbered exercises at his site:


Linear Algebra is a three-credit online course, consisting of five modules. Modules include an overview, topics, learning objectives, study materials, and activities. Module titles are listed below.


For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments, and take two proctored examinations—a midterm and a final. See below for more details.  See below for details.

Consult the Course Calendar for due dates.

Discussion Forums

You are required to participate in five graded discussion forums. Discussion forums are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules. There is also an ungraded but required introduction forum in Module 1. Online Discussion Grading Rubric.

Written Assignments

You are required to complete five written assignments. The written assignments draw on even-numbered exercises from the textbook. For each assignment, answer all assigned exercises, and show all work.

Assignments must be prepared electronically with a word processor, preferably using whatever equation editor comes with your word processing software. However, if your word processor is not compatible with your mentor's word processor, you will need to save your document as a rich-text file (.rtf) before submitting it. Check with your mentor first to determine file compatibility. (Important: Use the equation editor to insert equations into your word-processed document, not to create the document itself.)

When preparing your answers, please identify each exercise clearly by textbook section and exercise number. Be sure to include your name at the top of the paper, as well as the course name and code and the semester and year in which you are enrolled. To receive full credit for your answers, you must show all work and include complete solutions.


Exam Study Tools

For a list of key concepts that may appear on your exam(s), refer to the study guide(s) available in the Examinations section of the course Web site.

Ungraded practice exams for the midterm and final exam are available. Since these practice exams contain questions that are similar to those that you will see on the graded exams, they should serve as an effective way to prepare for the exams. In the Examinations section of the course Web site, click on the Practice Midterm Exam link or the Practice Final Exam link to begin.

Scheduling Exams

You are required to take two proctored online examinations: a midterm exam and a final exam. Both exams require that you use the University's Online Proctor Service (OPS). Please refer to the "Examinations and Proctors" section of the Online Student Handbook (see General Information area of the course Web site) for further information about scheduling and taking online exams and for all exam policies and procedures. You are strongly advised to schedule your exam within the first week of the semester.


Online exams are administered through the course Web site. Consult the Course Calendar for the official dates of exam weeks.

Midterm Examination

The midterm exam is two hours long and covers modules 1 to 2 of the course (textbook chapters 1 through 4). It consists of 21 multiple-choice questions.

The exam is open book, but not open notes. In this regard you are permitted to use only the authorized textbook. You are not allowed to consult a solutions manual, notes of any kind (including graded or ungraded activities), or any other reference sources or sources of information. The use of blank scratch paper for doing math calculations is permitted during online test administrations.

Note: You are permitted to use a calculator (scientific, graphing, or financial) but may not use a calculator on a phone, PDA, or any similar device.

Final Examination

The final exam is two hours long and covers all modules from 1, 2, 3, 4 to 5 of the course. The final exam  will focus more on the topics discussed in modules 3, 4 and 5.  The final exam consists of 22 multiple-choice questions.

The final exam is also open book, but not open notes. In this regard you are permitted to use only the authorized textbook. You are not allowed to consult a solutions manual, notes of any kind (including graded or ungraded activities), or any other reference sources or sources of information. The use of blank scratch paper for doing math calculations is permitted during online test administrations.

Note: You are permitted to use a calculator (scientific, graphing, or financial) but may not use a calculator on a phone, PDA, or any similar device.

Statement about Cheating

You are on your honor not to cheat during an exam. Cheating means:

If there is evidence that you have cheated or plagiarized in an exam, the exam will be declared invalid, and you will fail the course.


Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:






























Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a course not in your area of study), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings, etc.).


First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to maintaining academic quality, excellence, and honesty. The University expects all members of its community to share the commitment to academic integrity, an essential component of a quality academic experience.

Students at Thomas Edison State University are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

All members of the University community are responsible for reviewing the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the University Catalog and online at

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State University expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the University insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to helping students understand the seriousness of plagiarism, which is defined as using the work and ideas of others without proper citation. The University takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing are subject to discipline under the academic code of conduct policy.

If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > “Citing Sources.”)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance and originality report checking, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Originality Report Checking at Turnitin

Disciplinary Process for Plagiarism

Acts of both intentional and unintentional plagiarism violate the Academic Code of Conduct.

If an incident of plagiarism is an isolated minor oversight or an obvious result of ignorance of proper citation requirements, the mentor may handle the matter as a learning exercise. Appropriate consequences may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool in addition to a lower grade for the assignment or course. The mentor will notify the student and appropriate dean of the consequence by e-mail.

If the plagiarism appears intentional and/or is more than an isolated incident, the mentor will refer the matter to the appropriate dean, who will gather information about the violation(s) from the mentor and student, as necessary. The dean will review the matter and notify the student in writing of the specifics of the charge and the sanction to be imposed.

Possible sanctions include:

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