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MIT mathematician to give online talk April 9

Dr. Gilbert Strang, a renowned mathematician who has taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for more than 50 years, will give an online presentation Wednesday, April 9.

His free, public talk, “Teaching Online (Even Massive Open Online Courses) and the Math of Tridiagonal Matrices,” will take place at 7:30 p.m. and can be viewed in Memorial Field House Room 2100.



“This talk has two connected parts — both parts strongly connected with the audience,” Strang said. “It begins with unusual graphs — simple to create, hard to believe. This will be a small example of online teaching.”

Strang will share a bigger example of online teaching with a few minutes of MIT OpenCourseWare. He teaches Introduction to Linear Algebra and Computational Science and Engineering, both available as web lectures at More than four million have watched the classes online.

“A massive open online course is a big undertaking; it needs feedback on the past and present if it is to succeed in the future,” he said.

Since joining the MIT faculty in 1962, Strang has thrived. He has contributed to finite element theory, the calculus of variations, wavelet analysis and linear algebra, and has written 11 books and monographs.

His scholarly work has been recognized with numerous honors, including the Award for Distinguished Service to the Profession from the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics and the Haimo Prize and Chauvenet Prize from the Mathematical Association of America.

In addition, he has served as president of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, and is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Strang was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University in England, where he earned a bachelor of arts degree in 1957, and a National Science Foundation Fellow at the University of California in Los Angeles, where he received a doctorate in 1959.

His virtual return to the UT campus is sponsored by Delta X and Pi Mu Epsilon, the mathematics honor society at the University.

In 1986, Strang gave a talk when Pi Mu Epsilon celebrated its 50th anniversary at UT.

For more information on Strang’s online talk, contact Dr. Ivie Stein, UT associate professor of mathematics, at or 419.530.2994.


is UT's Director of University Communications. Contact her at 419.530.2410 or
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