I had previously posted my interim thoughts on this course, and now that the course is finished, thought I would add my final thoughts.
The final examination was fair and a mixture of the math and Python. You could certainly pass the course if you didn’t keep up with the Python, and do the exercises, but would be much more difficult.
The last section of the course was on calculus. Weeks 6 and 7 were devoted to a review of differential calculus and weeks 8 and 9 were devoted to integral calculus. Dr. Goldfeder continued to stress the real world application of the concepts learned.
We had a week off over the Thanksgiving holiday, which allowed us to catch up and review before the final examination. I took this time to both review the math (a little), and review Python (a lot). I went back through each weeks Python assignments to make sure I understood the concepts and could work through the code. I HIGHLY recommend this. Looking back I wished I would have spent more independent time applying Python and writing code to do the problems as much as possible as we were going through the course. I encourage future students in this class to attempt to do this.
After the class ended I started catching up on my to do list, which included how to use Jupyter Notebooks. After doing more exploring of the Jupyter Notebook, I wished I would have found them earlier. They are very useful for learning code, and taking notes at the same time. I would encourage students to look at these when they start this course. I wish Northwestern University would do what several other universities have done, and that is start teaching the class using these notebooks. This would be extremely useful for the Python part of the course. I have now been brushing up on R using the same Jupyter Notebooks, with an R kernel installed. I plan on using this notebook as I go through my next class, statistical analysis, which uses R. Here is the link to Project Jupyter’s webpage.
My overall assessment of the math for modelers course is highly positive, and I feel as if I learned what I set out to learn, and got my money’s worth. It is a very demanding class time wise, but for those interested in analytics, this is a foundational set of knowledge that must be learned.