May 06, 2011

Mauel, Michael Silver_nugget
[APAM 1601] Introduction to Computational Math and Physics

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

The previous reviews pretty much sum up this class. Though it is probably one of the hardest preprofessional courses, Professor Mauel makes this class awesome! He is one of the most enthusiastic professors I have had and his enthusiasm made this a 9 am class that I didn't miss once (as well as my favorite class so far at Columbia).

I took this class my spring semester after taking W1004 with Cannon. With this as my only prior programming experience, I found I was more than prepared for adapting to the new language (Mathematica) for this class. If you have no programming experience at all, this might make the beginning somewhat frustrating, as he does move rather quickly through the basics of the language.

I loved this class; it made my semester. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who has any experience with programing and is interested in physics, comp sci, or math, or to someone without programming experience prepared to learn quickly and put in time on your own (preferably before class starts) learning.

Workload:

Assignments every week or two that are "recommended" - take about 30 min to 1.5 hrs

4 Graded Projects: he lays out pretty clearly an example of what you should do which is pretty easy to just follow. If you are interested, he encourages you to do some investigation of the topics on your own instead. - projects take 4 hrs ++ depending on how much you do / if you get stuck with debugging your code forever