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Unit information: Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos in 2021/22

Unit name Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos
Unit code EMAT33100
Credit points 10
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Mike Jeffrey
Open unit status Not open

EMAT20200 Engineering Mathematics 2



School/department Department of Engineering Mathematics
Faculty Faculty of Engineering

Description including Unit Aims

Description: Based on a format of lively lectures combined with experiments and computer demonstrations, this unit introduces students of all disciplines to chaos theory and the profound effect that this field has had on a wide range of application areas. The course focuses on geometric techniques for analysing a system, thereby avoiding cumbersome algebraic manipulations. Of particular interest are qualitative changes of the dynamics as parameters are changed, which allows you to describe ways that a system can become chaotic.

Aims: This unit is intended to alert students to the complicated behaviour that can occur in simple systems and to equip them with the straightforward mathematical tools to analyse simple nonlinear systems. Additionally, the students will be introduced to a range of numerical methods that will allow them to investigate more complicated systems arising from real-world problems.

Intended Learning Outcomes

  1. Be able to analyze the stability of stationary solutions of ordinary differential equation systems and discrete time maps, locate critical parameter values at which the stability changes and interpret the implications of these transitions for the dynamics of the system.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of advanced concepts of nonlinear dynamics such as for instance higher codimension bifurcations.
  3. Be able to apply methods of nonlinear dynamics to analyze and understand the dynamics of real world systems.

Teaching Information

Teaching will be delivered through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous sessions, including lectures, supported by live online sessions, problem sheets and self-directed exercises.

Assessment Information

1 Summative Assessment, 100% - January Exam. This will assess all ILOs.


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. EMAT33100).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.