MATH 353 (2020) - Home Page

Welcome to MATH353 Optimisation for 2020.


  • Assignment 2 is due on Friday 1 May.

  • Assignment 1 Solutions The current version of Assignment 1 contains the solutions, that is, if you click on the Assignment 1 link, you will get the assignment together with the solutions.

  • The next lecture will be at 1:10pm (not 1pm) on Tuesday 28 April. You will receive a Zoom invitation at some stage before the lecture takes place.

Stop Press

  • Updated Assessment Details are given below.

  • Postponed Teaching As with all courses in the university, the teaching of this course will be delayed for some weeks. In particular the current assignment will not be due for some weeks. I'll post information about the start of teaching and the assignment due date as soon as possible.

Covid 19 Plans

  • General The following information indicates how things will probably go when teaching recommences. There will be no exam. Alternative assessment arrangements will be made in due course.

  • Lectures When lectures start they will probably be streamed using Zoom at the usual lecture time. You should receive an invitation to join a Zoom meeting about a day before the lecture. Zoom gives you the opportunity to participate in class just as you normally would. Let's see if we can make it work well.

The recordings of the lectures will be placed on Blackboard in the same way that current lectures are.

  • Tutorials The same applies to tutorials. Michal will arrange the Zoom meeting and send you an invitation. In fact I believe that the technology will work well for tutorials.

  • Assignments Assignments will be handed in online via Blackboard. They will still be worth 10% of the marks for the course.

  • Terms Tests will be made available for 48 hours on Blackboard. Within that 48 hour period you will need to find 1 hour to download the test, complete it, and upload it again.
The dates of the test are:
  • 4pm Wed 6th May to 4pm Fri 8th May
  • 4pm Wed 10th June to 4pm Fri 12th June
  • Quizzes will be used to test the later material in each half of the course. They will also be available on Blackboard, and will require 30 minutes to complete, under the same rules as the tests. Their dates are:
  • 4pm Wed 20th May to 4pm Fri 22nd May.
  • 4pm Wed 24th June to 4pm Fri 26th June
  • Geoff's Office Hours When teaching commences my office hours for this course are 2-3pm on Monday, Tuesday and Friday; that is, the hour after the lecture. I think Skype is a better technology for this, so I will leave Skype open on my computer at those times. My Skype address is geoffandlisawhittle.
  • Hang in there! I think the government has done the right thing. There is a chance that we will escape the worst of it. In fact mathematics can help. Arthur Koestler, who wrote the classic book Darkness at Noon, was for some time a political prisoner in Russia. He claims that thinking about mathematics kept him sane while he was in solitary confinement. His most exciting time was when he managed to rediscover the proof that there are infinitely many primes! I genuinely believe that working on an intellectually demanding subject like mathematics can help us get through difficult times.

Course Information

  • General course information is available here

  • Lectures are Monday 1:10pm, Tuesday 1:10pm, and Friday 1:10pm.

  • The tutorial is Thursday 1pm.

  • Assessment is based on 60% tests tests, 30% quizzes and 10% assignments.

  • There will be two terms tests, worth 30% each.

  • Assignments. There will be six assignments. Assignments will become available on the website at least one week before they are due.

  • Assignments will be submitted and returned electronically.

  • Paper Free This is a paperless course. All course materials will be placed on the website in advance of the lecture.

Linear Programming Notes

1. Introduction to Linear Programming
2. Theory of Linear Programming
3. The Simplex Algorithm
4. The Two Phase Method
5. The Dual Program

Linear Programming Slides

These are slide versions of the notes in case you find them easier to read.
1. Introduction to Linear Programming
2. Theory of Linear Programming
3. The Simplex Algorithm
4. The Two Phase Method
5. The Dual Program


Week 1: No tutorial  


Assignment 1
Assignment 2
Assignments will be placed here as they become available.

The purpose of the tutorial and the assignments is to help you learn. Attending tutorials and lectures, and seriously working on assignments is strongly correlated with success in mathematics courses. Ignore this at your peril.

University policies and statutes

It is worthwhile becoming familiar with the following information. Other relevant policies can be found at the academic policy website.
Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
ass1.pdfpdf ass1.pdf manage 366 K 02 Apr 2020 - 13:31 Main.whittle  
ass2.pdfpdf ass2.pdf manage 71 K 03 Apr 2020 - 15:23 Main.whittle  
dual-program.pdfpdf dual-program.pdf manage 387 K 23 Mar 2020 - 12:53 Main.whittle  
intro-lin-prog.pdfpdf intro-lin-prog.pdf manage 299 K 01 Mar 2020 - 15:05 Main.whittle  
simplex.pdfpdf simplex.pdf manage 661 K 16 Mar 2020 - 14:53 Main.whittle  
slides-dual-program.pdfpdf slides-dual-program.pdf manage 361 K 23 Mar 2020 - 12:54 Main.whittle  
slides-intro-lin-prog.pdfpdf slides-intro-lin-prog.pdf manage 305 K 01 Mar 2020 - 15:05 Main.whittle  
slides-simplex.pdfpdf slides-simplex.pdf manage 656 K 16 Mar 2020 - 14:53 Main.whittle  
slides-theory-lin-prog.pdfpdf slides-theory-lin-prog.pdf manage 507 K 05 Mar 2020 - 16:03 Main.whittle  
slides-two-phase.pdfpdf slides-two-phase.pdf manage 1 MB 16 Mar 2020 - 14:54 Main.whittle  
theory-lin-prog.pdfpdf theory-lin-prog.pdf manage 508 K 05 Mar 2020 - 16:04 Main.whittle  
two-phase.pdfpdf two-phase.pdf manage 421 K 16 Mar 2020 - 14:55 Main.whittle