Linear Algebra & Its Applications: Custom Edition for the Univeristy of Buffalo

Linear algebra is relatively easy for students during the early stages of the course, when the material is presented in a familiar, concrete setting. But when abstract concepts are introduced, students often hit a brick wall. Instructors seem to agree that certain concepts (such as linear independence, spanning, subspace, vector space, and linear transformations), are not easily understood, and require time to assimilate. Since they are fundamental to the study of linear algebra, students' understanding of these concepts is vital to their mastery of the subject. Lay introduces these concepts early in a familiar, concrete Rn setting, develops them gradually, and returns to them again and again throughout the text. Finally, when discussed in the abstract, these concepts are more accessible.

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By trivialchemy · ★★★☆☆ · July 12, 2007
When he was a schoolchild, the story goes, future German mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss was ordered by his arithmetic teacher to sum all the numbers between 1 and 100 -- a ruse to keep his pupils busy. In a flash of providential insight, young Gauss realized that the pairwise sums of numbers... ...more
By Kristen · ★★★★★ · January 17, 2008
Linear Algebra is not what it seems at first thought. Fascinating way of looking and solving for space in all dimensions. I enjoyed this book ...more
By Ivan (Purmerend, 07, Netherlands) · ★★★★★ · February 03, 2012
I had to read “Linear Algebra and Its Applications” by David Lay for the Linear Algebra 1 class in my first semester in University. So this is a gentle introduction to Linear Algebra. The book doesn’t assume a lot of previous knowledge.

Chapter Structure

Each chapter starts with an introductory exa... ...more
By Jerzy (Pittsburgh, PA) · ★★★★★ · October 12, 2008
Much much much better than Gilbert Strang's book. Strang seemed like a very nice guy when I saw him speak, but his book is no match for Lay's in terms of doing awesome things like making wonderful lists of all the 50 different statements that mean the same thing (for example: determinant of matri... ...more
By Joecolelife (Frankfort, IL) · ★★★★★ · April 04, 2011
I really enjoyed learning from this book. Not beeing a keen reader I was very impressed with the conciseness and clarity of the text. There were many clear examples in the text. I found the question at the end of each chapter helpful for reviewing the new information.
What I would have liked to se... ...more
By Eric (The United States) · ★★★★★ · June 18, 2009
I felt like this was one of the best mathematical textbooks I've had the pleasure of using. Excerises seem perfectly targeted for each section and the text does have some limited time (space) for brief discussions on real world applications. A great introduction to linear algebra (although I have... ...more
By Sandra (Seattle, WA) · ★★★★★ · February 26, 2015
This is one of the best textbooks I have ever used. The study guide supplement is also very good. ...more
By Michael (Oakland, CA) · ★★★★☆ · May 06, 2011
Very good introduction to linear algebra, teaches you more how to do it than what it means. ...more
By Daniel (Port Coquitlam, BC, Canada) · ★★★★☆ · March 16, 2013
Good explanations, questions can be pretty fluffy. ...more
By Bob (Denver, CO) · ★★★★☆ · December 05, 2012
tough read but it's extra topics are fun ...more