Computational Methods

    Unit code: RCM3711 | Study level: Undergraduate
    (Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
    Footscray Park
    RCM2713 - Modelling for Decision Making or
    RCM2611 - Linear Statistical Models or
    RCM2911 - Linear Optimisation Modelling
    (Or equivalent to be determined by unit coordinator)


    This unit introduces students to numerical and approximate techniques to solving applied mathematical problems and the application of current problem-solving tools such as CAS calculators. Computational methods are a core technique for analysing and explaining patterns: both naturally-occurring and arising in industrial and scientific applications. While applied mathematics can provide many “aha!” moments with recognising connections between two seemingly different topics, computational methods are also highly satisfying to teach. As with all mathematics, this unit requires demonstration of logical rigour and application to problem solving. Pre-service teachers will learn how to introduce students to the relevance of computational methods, relevant technology and applications. This unit will consist of:

    • error analysis & propagation;
    • use of technology (CAS Calculators & Desktop Tools)
    • solving non-linear equations;
    • solving systems of linear equations;
    • interpolation and extrapolation;
    • numerical calculus, including integration (quadrature) and differentiation;
      Although the modules are discrete, they are scaffolded to the extent that later modules assume material and techniques from previous modules.

    Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

    1. Analyse the errors inherent in numerical processes.
    2. Implement numerical techniques using a CAS Calculator as well as with desktop computer tools;
    3. Critically evaluate a numerical process in terms of its speed of convergence, robustness, and ease of implementation;
    4. Apply appropriate processes to a wide variety of mathematical problems; and
    5. Critically review the use of technology in the secondary mathematics classroom.


    For Melbourne campuses

    Assessment type: Test
    Grade: 10%
    Online Quiz (MCx10)
    Assessment type: Other
    Grade: 10%
    Discussion Board Posts (5)
    Assessment type: Assignment
    Grade: 60%
    Written Computations (2)
    Assessment type: Presentation
    Grade: 20%
    Case Study of a real world problem

    Required reading

    No text is required; materials for the unit will be made available through the learning management system.

    As part of a course

    This unit is not compulsory for any specific course. Depending on the course you study, this unit may be taken as an elective.

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