PSU/PKU Summer Program 2009

We are pleased to announce "The Second International Summer Program on Differential Equations", organized by the Mathematics departments at Penn State and Peking University .

Time and place:

The program will take place from July 13 to July 29, 2009, at Peking University, China's oldest and most prestigious university and an internationally recognized educational institution. In addition, you will have the opportunity to visit the city of Beijing, the cultural and political center of China, and many of its historical sites.

Course content:

The two-week school will cover solution methods for ordinary and partial differential equations. Lectures will be given by professors from both Peking University and Penn State. Analytic solution methods for solving PDEs will be introduced, however, solution techniques for various types of differential equations using computational methods will be the central topic of the course. Students will implement numerical techniques in MATLAB to compute and visualize approximate solutions of various ODEs and PDEs. Overall, the goal of the program is to give students an introduction to research in the field of Computational Science.


Participants will include students from Penn State and local students from Peking University. Students will be asked to form research groups and work collaboratively on course material and research projects; teamwork and collaboration will be strongly emphasized.

Preparatory work:

The new course is offered through an embedded program at Penn State; in the Spring semester, the course is listed as 297S with 2 credits. Students will register for this course in the Spring to receive credit for attending the summer course in 2009. In the Spring semester, the class will meet weekly to review preliminary materials and discuss pre-departure organizational matters.

The previous summer program:

This is the second such summer program organized by the mathematics departments at Penn State and Peking University. The first program took place in 2008; 12 students from Penn State traveled to China and attended the summer program, together with 24 students from Peking University. The 12 students from PSU received sufficient financial support to cover their local and travel expenses. Overall, students were exposed to many close interactions with local students from PKU, through course projects, classwork, and related culture activities. Student feedback on the first program was extremely positive and described by many as a remarkable academic and cultural experience. For more information on the program, please visit the course web page. The site includes details about the program schedule, the culture activities, student feedback, group photos, financial aid opportunities and budget estimates.


Students who have taken Math 251 (251 H), and those students who will take Math 251 (251 H) in Spring 2009 are eligible to apply. In order to participate in this program and to be considered for financial support, you must complete and submit the application form by Dec. 12, 2008. Those selected for the program will then be asked to register for the Spring semester course. Here is the application form Word , PDF .

Open house:

In order to provide more information about this proram and answer questions that you might have, we will have a lunch meeting on Dec. 2, from 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM at 114 McAllister building. Pizza and soda will be provided for free. We will invite the faculty and students from last year's program to share their experiences with us. If you are coming to the meeting, please contact Chensong at so that we can prepare enough food.


For questions about this program, please contact

Prof. James Brannick at brannick AT psu DOT edu
Prof. Xiantao Li at xli AT math DOT psu DOT edu
Prof. Jinchao Xu, at xu AT math DOT psu DOT edu