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Matrices are used in many areas of mathematics, and also have applications in diverse areas such as engineering, computer graphics, image processing, physical sciences, biological sciences and social sciences. Powerful calculators and computers can now carry out complicated and difficult numeric and algebraic computations involving matrix methods, and such technology is a vital tool in related real-life, problem-solving applications.
This book provides mathematics teachers with an elementary introduction to matrix algebra and its uses in formulating and solving practical problems, solving systems of linear equations, representing combinations of affine (including linear) transformations of the plane and modelling finite state Markov chains. The basic theory in each of these areas is explained and illustrated using a broad range of examples. A feature of the book is the complementary use of technology, particularly computer algebra systems, to do the calculations involving matrices required for the applications. A selection of student activities with solutions and text and web references are included throughout the book.