PDEs and Waves (MATH3078)


This unit of study introduces Sturm-Liouville eigenvalue problems and their role in finding solutions to boundary value problems. Analytical solutions of linear PDEs are found using separation of variables and integral transform methods. Three of the most important equations of mathematical physics - the wave equation, the diffusion (heat) equation and Laplace's equation - are treated, together with a range of applications. There is particular emphasis on wave phenomena, with an introduction to the theory of sound waves and water waves.
To pass MATH3078, students must achieve satisfactory performance in the in-semester assessment component in order to pass the unit of study.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


Three 1 hour lectures and one 1 hour tutorial per week.


One 2 hour exam, assignments, quizzes (100%). To pass MATH3078/3978, students must achieve satisfactory performance in the in-semester assessment component.

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules


12 credit points of Intermediate Mathematics

Assumed knowledge

(MATH2061 or MATH2961) and (MATH2065 or MATH2965)


MATH3018 or MATH3921 or MATH3978

Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.