Gilbert Strang

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W. Gilbert Strang
Born (1934-11-27) November 27, 1934 (age 88)
Alma materMIT
Balliol College, Oxford
AwardsChauvenet Prize (1977)
Scientific career
InstitutionsMassachusetts Institute of Technology
ThesisDifference Methods for Mixed Boundary Value Problems (1959)
Doctoral advisorPeter K. Henrici
Doctoral students

William Gilbert Strang (born November 27, 1934[1]), usually known as simply Gilbert Strang or Gil Strang, is an American mathematician, with contributions to finite element theory, the calculus of variations, wavelet analysis and linear algebra. He has made many contributions to mathematics education, including publishing mathematics textbooks. Strang is the MathWorks Professor of Mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.[2] He teaches Linear Algebra, Computational Science, and Engineering, Learning from Data, and his lectures are freely available through MIT OpenCourseWare.


Strang was born in Chicago in 1934. His parents William and Mary Catherine Strang migrated to the USA from Scotland. He and his sister Vivian grew up in Washington DC and Cincinnati, and went to high school at Principia in St. Louis.

Strang completed his undergraduate degree (S.B.) in 1955 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was the recipient of a Rhodes Scholarship to University of Oxford, where he received his B.A. and M.A. from Balliol College in 1957.

Strang earned his Ph. D. from University of California, Los Angeles in 1959 as a National Science Foundation Fellow, under the supervision of Peter K. Henrici. His dissertation was titled "Difference Methods for Mixed Boundary Value Problems".

While at Oxford, Strang met his future wife Jillian Shannon, and they married in 1958. Following his Ph.D. at UCLA, they have lived in Wellesley, Massachusetts for almost all of his 62 years on the MIT faculty. The Strangs have three sons David, John, and Robert and describe themselves as a very close-knit family.

Strang plans to retire in 2023.

Strang's teaching has focused on linear algebra which has helped the subject become essential for students of many majors. His linear algebra video lectures are popular on YouTube and MIT OpenCourseware. Strang founded Wellesley-Cambridge Press to publish Introduction to Linear Algebra (now in 6th edition) and ten other books.

University Positions[edit]

Following his PhD studies, from 1959 to 1961, Strang was a C. L. E. Moore instructor at M.I.T. in the Mathematics department. From 1961-1962 he was a NATO Postdoctoral Fellow at Oxford University. Since 1962, Strang has been a mathematics professor at MIT.

He has received Honorary Titles and Fellowships from the following institutes:




Books and monographs[edit]

  1. Introduction to Linear Algebra, Sixth Edition, Wellesley-Cambridge Press (2023),
  2. Linear Algebra for Everyone (2020)[10]
  3. Linear Algebra and Learning from Data (2019)[11]
  4. Calculus (2017)
  5. Introduction to Linear Algebra, Fifth Edition (2016)
  6. Differential Equations and Linear Algebra (2014)
  7. Essays in Linear Algebra (2012)
  8. Algorithms for Global Positioning, with Kai Borre (2012)
  9. An Analysis of the Finite Element Method, with George Fix (2008)
  10. Computational Science and Engineering (2007)
  11. Linear Algebra and Its Applications, Fourth Edition (2005)
  12. Linear Algebra, Geodesy, and GPS, with Kai Borre (1997)
  13. Wavelets and Filter Banks, with Truong Nguyen (1996)
  14. Strang, Gilbert (1986). Introduction to Applied Mathematics. Wellesley, MA: Wellesley-Cambridge Press. pp. xii+758. MR 0870634.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Roselle, D. P. (1977). "Award of the 1977 Chauvenet Prize to Professor Gilbert Strang". The American Mathematical Monthly. 84 (6): 417. CiteSeerX doi:10.1080/00029890.1977.11994378. JSTOR 2321898.
  2. ^ "MIT announces Professor Gilbert Strang as the first MathWorks Professor of Mathematics". Cambridge, MA: MIT News. Retrieved September 26, 2011.
  3. ^ "SIAM Fellows".
  4. ^ List of Fellows of the American Mathematical Society, retrieved 2013-08-05.
  5. ^ Strang, Gilbert (1973-11-01). "Piecewise polynomials and the finite element method". Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society. American Mathematical Society (AMS). 79 (6): 1128–1138. doi:10.1090/s0002-9904-1973-13351-8. ISSN 0002-9904.
  6. ^ Edelman, Alan; Strang, Gilbert (2004). "Pascal matrices". Amer. Math. Monthly. 111 (3): 189–197. doi:10.2307/4145127. JSTOR 4145127.
  7. ^ "Deborah and Franklin Tepper Haimo Award".
  8. ^ Irwin Sizer Award, retrieved 2020-05-25.
  9. ^ "Leadership | SIAM". Retrieved 2019-09-11.
  10. ^ "Linear Algebra for Everyone". Retrieved 2021-01-11.
  11. ^ "Linear Algebra and Learning from Data". Retrieved 2019-09-11.

External links[edit]