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Student and tutor module reviews

Mathematical methods, models and modelling

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  • Points: 60
  • Code: MST210
  • Level: 2
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Student reviews

Really enjoyed this, did it alongside 'Pure mathematics' (M208), and enjoyed this very much.

Not a big fan of the modelling activity though, thought that took up unnecessary amounts of time.

But other than that loved applied maths.

Course starting: October 2020

Review posted: August 2021

This module is a big step up from the Level 1 prerequisites and took up a lot of my time. Quite a bit more than I had anticipated, while holding down a full time job.
The material is very interesting and at times very exciting. But it is hard and requires much effort.
Particular highlights were the two units on vector calculus (and seeing the derivation of one of the Maxwell equations).
As other reviews have noted, get ahead and stay ahead. This is a module that could easily get out of hand. Eventually, MST210 proved very rewarding and exciting. I am on the applied mathematics/statistics pathway but I can imagine great pleasure in developing some of the topics introduced in MST210 in Level 3 modules on fluid mechanics, electromagnetism, and quantum mechanics.

David Sidebotham

Course starting: October 2019

Review posted: March 2021

A really exciting module with quite a lot of work in it. Confidence in Maxima is pretty essential for the TMAs and the modelling problem is quite a lot of work too. However, the support received throughout the course from the website/resources and from my tutor made studying this module an enjoyable experience and less stressful than what I thought it would be.

Course starting: October 2016

Review posted: June 2018

There are many good aspects of this course; the books are generally clear, the additional online material (in the form of screencasts, tutorials and practice quizzes) is very helpful and the TMAs are stretching without being daunting.

However, the modelling assignment managed to be educational trivial while also being quite time consuming. Another negative feature was the pacing of the course; it began far too gently and as a consequence the more advanced material at the end of the course had to be covered hastily.

Overall, if you have to take this course look to get ahead and stay ahead; if you don't have to take it, it's probably better to opt for MST224 (which has a 96% satisfaction rating compared to 75% for MST210).

Course starting: October 2014

Review posted: January 2016

I really enjoyed doing MST210, it was by far my favourite module so far (I'm a maths student), but I'd only recommend doing it if you have already covered the recommended prerequisite modules.

The printed learning materials were generally very clear, well written and nicely presented. These were supplemented nicely by the online materials (the screencasts and the practice quizzes were especially useful).

It was satisfying, but certainly not an easy module. For me it took up a lot more time, and seemed to teach more new things, than M208 did. There is a small overlap with M208, in that both modules cover (in a slightly different way) linear algebra.

The material covered is really interesting, and made you feel like you were learning a lot more new maths. It was also interesting to observe how differently people find the same materials. Some people find pure maths easier and other find applied maths easier. Some people felt that they were at a disadvantage not having studied physics before. I do no share that view. If you just think of it as a mathematical model, and don't confuse the given technical meanings of words within the model with the everyday use of the same words then you won't go too far wrong.

The modelling project is worth a large proportion of your total continuous assessment score, and so takes up a lot of time. Though not an easy ride, I found it deeply satisfying and that doing it definitely contributed to boosting my mathematical skills. The way it was arranged for my cohort was that we were all allocated into small groups and were supposed to work cooperatively together in our groups to create the model. This was done via shared wiki page that everyone in the group could contribute to in their own time. The group working did not seem to work well for many groups, and I expect the way it works will be changed in future presentations.

Paul Culliney

Course starting: October 2014

Review posted: August 2015

Please note

Each of the views expressed above is an individual's very particular response, largely unedited, and should be viewed with that in mind. Since modules are subject to regular updating, some of the issues identified may have already been addressed. In some instances the faculty may have provided a response to a comment. If you have a query about a particular module, please contact your Regional Centre.

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