The Math of Data Science: Linear Algebra

This course is an introduction to linear algebra. You will discover the basic objects of linear algebra – how to compute with them, how they fit together theoretically, and how they can be used to solve real problems.

This course is archived
Estimated 8 weeks
6–8 hours per week
Self-paced
Progress at your own speed

About this course

Skip About this course

Linear algebra is at the core of all of modern mathematics, and is used everywhere from statistics and data science, to economics, physics and electrical engineering. However, learning the subject is not principally about acquiring computational ability, but is more a matter of fluency in its language and theory.

In this course, we will start with systems of linear equations, and connect them to vectors and vector spaces, matrices, and linear transformations. We will be emphasizing the vocabulary throughout, so that students become comfortable working with the different aspects.

We will then introduce matrix and vector operations such as matrix multiplication and inverses, paying particular attention to their underlying purposes. Students will learn not just how to calculate them, but also why they work the way that they do.

We willdiscuss the key concepts of basis and dimension, which form the foundation for many of the more advanced concepts of linear algebra.

The last chapter concerns inner products, which allow us to use linear algebra for approximating solutions; we will see how this allows for applications ranging from statistics and linear regression to digital audio.

At a glance

  • Institution: RICEx
  • Subject: Math
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Prerequisites:

    High school algebra. Some calculus is useful for certain examples or problems but is not strictly necessary.

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn

The relationships between linear equations, matrices, and linear transformations; the principles of vector and matrix operations; the significance of basis and dimension of a vector space; the applications of inner products and orthogonality.

About the instructors

Who can take this course?

Unfortunately, learners from one or more of the following countries or regions will not be able to register for this course: Iran, Cuba and the Crimea region of Ukraine. While edX has sought licenses from the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to offer our courses to learners in these countries and regions, the licenses we have received are not broad enough to allow us to offer this course in all locations. edX truly regrets that U.S. sanctions prevent us from offering all of our courses to everyone, no matter where they live.