Introduction to Mathematica

5 credits

Syllabus, Master's level, 1FA164

A revised version of the syllabus is available.
Education cycle
Second cycle
Main field(s) of study and in-depth level
Physics A1N
Grading system
Fail (U), Pass (3), Pass with credit (4), Pass with distinction (5)
Finalised by
The Faculty Board of Science and Technology, 26 March 2021
Responsible department
Department of Physics and Astronomy

Entry requirements

120 credits in science/engineering. Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6.

Learning outcomes

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • account for the basic structure of computer algebra systems,
  • implement various algorithms in the Mathematica language,
  • compare and contrast different programming styles,
  • efficiently use functional and rule-based programming,
  • test and optimize Mathematica code,
  • design and set up a Mathematica package,
  • install simple functions written in C/C++ into Mathematica with MathLink,
  • apply Mathematica to solve problems in mathematics, physics, chemistry.


Introduction to computer algebra systems and symbolic programming. Basics of Mathematica as a programming language: symbolic expressions, vectors and matrices, conditional expressions, loops. Substitutions and patterns. Linear algebra and calculus with Mathematica. Different programming styles in Mathematica: procedural, functional and rule-based programming. Graphics. MathLink interface, how to install C/C++ functions into Mathematica. Elements of optimization, parallel programming. Writing your own Mathematica package. Applications in Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry.


Lectures, problem-solving sessions.


Hand-in problems including group work. Project with written report.

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the disability coordinator of the university.