2021 Mathematics for Physics A (EPS course)

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Academic unit or major
Undergraduate major in Earth and Planetary Sciences
Aso Naofumi 
Class Format
Lecture / Exercise     
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Mon5-8(石川台2号館Ishikawadai Bldg. 2 318)  Thr5-8(石川台2号館Ishikawadai Bldg. 2 318)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
Access Index

Course description and aims

This course covers the mathematical basis necessary for understanding the physical phenomena in Earth and planetary sciences. Especially, the mathematical skills learned in this course is fundamentally required in all geophysics courses in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences. Students are expected to understand the basic concepts of fundamental mathematics including vector operations, differential equations, and the Fourier transform, and to learn the mathematical skill necessary for studying Earth and planetary science. After the systematic explanation from the lecturer, students learn mathematical knowledge and skills by solving problems proactively throughout exercises.

Student learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students will learn the mathematical basis required for understanding Earth and planetary sciences including:
1) Vector operations
2) Ordinary and partial differential equations
3) Fourier transform, delta function, and Green’s function


Differential equation
Fourier transform

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

In each class, students are given a systematic explanation about the topic of the day during the first half of the class and do exercises during the last half of the class. Although there are no specific assignments, students are required to answer a quiz every class, so please carefully review what you learned in each class.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Vector calculus 1 Vector analysis
Class 2 Vector calculus 2 Vector derivative
Class 3 Vector calculus 3 Integrals of a vector field
Class 4 Vector calculus 4 Integral theorems
Class 5 Vector calculus 5 Curvilinear coordinates and scale factors
Class 6 Vector calculus 6 Vector calculus in curvilinear coordinates
Class 7 Vector calculus 7 Matrices
Class 8 Differential equation 1 1st order differential equations
Class 9 Differential equation 2 2nd order differential equations
Class 10 Differential equation 3 Higher order differential equations
Class 11 Fourier transform 1 Fourier series and Fourier transform
Class 12 Fourier transform 2 Delta function, power spectrum, and discrete Fourier transform
Class 13 Fourier transform 3 Differential equation and Fourier transform
Class 14 Final exam Comprehension check

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

As the topic of each class bases on those of the previous classes, please review it after each class to prepare for the next class.


This course does not base on any specific textbook.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

A summary note is provided at each class.

Assessment criteria and methods

Students' scores bases on quizzes in every class and the final exam.

Related courses

  • EPS.B210 : Mathematics for Physics B (EPS course)

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

No prerequisites.

Contact information (e-mail and phone)    Notice : Please replace from "[at]" to "@"(half-width character).

Naofumi Aso (aso[at]eps.sci.titech.ac.jp)

Office hours

Walk-in visits might be OK, but it is preferred to make an appointment by e-mail in advance.


We use Japanese in this course, but quiz and exams can be translated into English upon request.

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