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Calc 3 and Differential Equations

  1. Jun 29, 2014 #1
    Hello everyone,
    I am currently entering my second year of college in the fall, and will begin Calc 2. My questions involves whether or not it is a good idea to take Calc 3 and differential equations the same semester. The community college I'm attending does not offer linear algebra, so I can not take that. Should I take calc 3 and differential equations in the same semester without linear algebra, or should I wait and take them in a different order and time? Thanks for the advice.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 29, 2014 #2
    Sounds exactly like what I am planning. I am taking calc 1 right now over the summer and then I start calc 2 and then in the spring I take Calc 3 and Differential equations/linear algebra double course. That on top of physics 2 will be brutal. Good luck to us!
  4. Jun 29, 2014 #3
    Yeah, it will be brutal, but it will be fun.
  5. Jun 29, 2014 #4


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    Homework Helper

    Yes, they hardly overlap so you can take them simultaneously. But don't fall behind in either class, spend extra time on weekends if you have to to say ahead, or drain us PF helpers of our hospitality. :)
  6. Jun 29, 2014 #5


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    At my community college, it is customary for physics and engineering students to take calc 3, diff eq, and physics 2 during the same semester. So it's nothing out of the ordinary for one to take those two classes simultaneously.
  7. Jun 30, 2014 #6
    I took calc 3 and DE during the same semester.

    The way I see it...you have vector/3D calculus which is just extending knowledge of what you already know and then you have DE which is really just algebra with a twist (as my calc 3 professor put it) :)

    You see partial derivatives in both, so I guess they're kinda similar. Either way I think you'll be fine, in undergraduate there are much more difficult combinations than the two you listed.

    Also don't neglect your DEs...that will come to bite you in the *** later ;)
  8. Jun 30, 2014 #7
    I took calc 3 and diff eq during a summer before linear algebra. Its fine depending on how much linear is involved. I had to self teach some linear algebra but it wasnt bad. I think I saw partial derivatives in diff eq first but I cant say for sure.
  9. Jul 1, 2014 #8
    In my university's general engineering curriculum, calc 3, differential equations, physics 2, and some other engineering class is taken in a single semester (third semester specifically). This is the default I suppose for anyone aiming at a 4-year graduation, so I don't see why you shouldn't. Also, in my university, linear algebra's prerequisite is calc 3, so I think you'll do fine without its knowledge.
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