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Calculus I and II Question

  1. May 13, 2015 #1

    I am a Computer Science major still knocking out some of my gen eds. Unfortunately, today I found out that a made a 79 on one of my final Calculus I tests. This has brought my letter grade down to a mid-high B. I was planning on taking Calculus II over the summer, however, now I am concerned that I will not do well. The test I did not do so well on was mostly over optimization problems. My question is, should I retake Calculus I over the summer to reinforce my knowledge and make an A or should I continue on with Calculus II. I have started going back to school a year ago and am still getting back in swing with my math skills as I was always pretty good at math in high school.

    Thank you in advance for any feedback.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 13, 2015 #2
    You won't see optimization again in calculus 2. Or at least, that's usually the case. I wouldn't recommend retaking it. I'd just recommend understanding where you made mistakes and focus on improving that thought process as well as your comfort with the material.
  4. May 14, 2015 #3
    If you struggled with application type problems there will be application type problems early that I think are actually harder with integration. I think the biggest thing with application problems(for me ) is they require more practice to see what approach you need. You have to see a good number of them to recognize what to do.

    I would not retake it unless you failed, you clearly understand the material if you have a mid B but just made some errors on exams which is normal.
  5. May 14, 2015 #4


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    I found that optimization was the most difficult part of calculus 1. The problems were enormously varied and relatively complicated compared to the rest of the material, and mostly solvable on a case-to-case basis. There's no shame in a B+, but if you're like me and you just have to achieve the standard you set for yourself or the whole world crumbles, then yea, re-take the course. The rule I generally follow is anything below a B needs to be retaken for me to have any hope moving forward with my degree.
  6. May 14, 2015 #5


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    That's a bit silly. Getting a B at most means that you should practice more and self-study it a bit more. Taking the course again is totally unnecessary. The thing is that you (perhaps unconsciously) learn a lot when you do more advanced material. So it is better to move on, since you will continue to learn it anyway.
  7. May 14, 2015 #6


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    I understand this principle is a little bit naive going forward since I'm sure I'll get to courses where the class average is like 30%. While I do prefer to look ahead, I'm cautious with the self knowledge that while I can grasp things conceptually, my ability to construct those concepts and relate them to one another in order to utilize the mathematics in a meaningful or useful way is severely hampered. Either way, the challenge and joy is what keeps me going.
    Last edited: May 14, 2015
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