There are two excellent “Linear Algebra and Its Applications” textbooks available today that are particularly popular among Algebra students. Gilbert Strang is the author of one of these textbooks, and David Lay also has own book of the same name. Though these two textbooks are entirely different from each other due to being written by different authors, the subject matter remains very similar. It is a good idea for professors to clearly instruct which author’s Linear Algebra and Its Applications textbook will be used for class, this helps students avoid confusion.

Each author brings their own personal touch, research, and breadth of knowledge to a subject that clearly each love and know like the back of their hands.

### Gilbert Strang

*Linear Algebra and Its Applications* written by Dr. Gilbert Strang, professor of Math at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is a wonderful textbook to read while learning this subject. A Rhode Scholar at Oxford, and Sloane Fellow among other honors, he brings his own training and care to his textbook Linear Algebra and Its Applications. Making intuitive understanding the focus of his material, his love of the subject incorporates unique perspectives explaining the math behind the ideas rather than only going over sample problems. Understanding not just how numbers and algebraic equations interact is not enough, students should learn why numbers are behaving a certain way. It is this underlying detail in mathematics that is vital in order to quickly progress through material. Not all student’s possess the capability of understanding the subject matter to this level, but Strang goes far and wide in giving students the building blocks they need to try.

His communication style is personal and informal as he empowers his readers to garner the math processes they need while not being overwhelming. Gilbert Strang’s textbook has a 1st edition, 2nd edition, 3rd edition, and a 4th edition.

Another author of an excellent math book was written by Dr. David Lay.

### David Lay

Dr. David Lay, Mathematics department at the University of Maryland, has written and updated his very popular math textbook, Linear Algebra and Its Applications. Currently, the book so far has had a 1st edition, 2nd edition, and 3rd edition. Lay has a history of being a leader in modernizing how linear algebra should be taught. He has published numerous articles on the subject. Elucidating Lay’s experience and professionalism in the subject, he received the Distinguished Scholar-Teacher award from the University of Maryland. Lay has constantly crafted and developed his textbook further through out each edition. His writing style exudes a personable and warm tone that invites even the most apprehensive learners of liner algebra. The time taken in creating this textbook also extends to its supplemental resources.

### Related Resources

If you are looking for a free linear algebra textbook, instead of spending money on one, then look no further than our list of free mathematics textbooks by clicking here. Many professors of Linear Algebra have published their teaching material and self-authored textbooks onto the internet for everyone to use.