MAT2440 – Differential equations and optimal control theory

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

Mathematical models based on ordinary differential equations, scalar equations, systems, systems of linear ordinary differential equations, stability of dynamical systems, numerical methods. Introduction to fundamental concepts of optimization and control of dynamical systems with an emphasis on mathematical techniques such as dynamic programming and calculus of variation.

Learning outcome

Basic skills in handling ordinary differential equations both analytically and numerically, and an understanding of how such equations are used in modelling. Students shall learn to solve systems of linear ordinary differential equations and describe and determine the stability properties of dynamical systems based on ordinary differential equations. Students shall obtain the skills to solve control problems by means of central mathematical techniques such as calculus of variation and dynamic programming.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

In addition to fulfilling the Higher Education Entrance Qualification, applicants have to meet the following special admission requirements:

  • Mathematics R1 (or Mathematics S1 and S2) + R2

And in addition one of these:

  • Physics (1+2)
  • Chemistry (1+2)
  • Biology (1+2)
  • Information technology (1+2)
  • Geosciences (1+2)
  • Technology and theories of research (1+2)

The special admission requirements may also be covered by equivalent studies from Norwegian upper secondary school or by other equivalent studies (in Norwegian).

Recommended previous knowledge

MAT1100 – Calculus, MAT-INF1100 – Modelling and Computations, MAT1110 – Calculus and Linear Algebra and MAT1120 – Linear Algebra.

Overlapping courses

For information about the potential partial overlap with other courses, contact the Department.


4 hours of lectures/problem sessions every week through the semester.


One compulsory assignment needs to be passed within given deadlines to be allowed to take the final exam. Final mark based on written examination at the end of the semester.

Rules for compulsory assignments at the Department of Mathematics.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

Subjects taught in English will only offer the exam paper in English.

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

This course offers both postponed and resit of examination. Read more:

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Every spring

MAT2440 was offered for the last time spring 2017 and will continue as MAT3440 - Dynamical systems



Every spring

Teaching language


The course is given in English. If no students have asked for the course in English within the first lecture, it may be given in Norwegian.