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Do I Need Calculus or Another Mathematics to Use This Book?

  1. Jun 8, 2013 #1
    Do I Need Calculus or Another Advanced Mathematics to Use This Book?

    I would like to learn the material from the first to the sixth chapter in An Introduction to Mathematical Thinking: Algebra and Number Systems.

    Here are the topics in the book
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 9, 2013 #2

    Simon Bridge

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  4. Jun 9, 2013 #3


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    Do you know a bit of set theory (Chapter 1 in that book)?

    If so, look up these topics online: natural numbers, integers, well-ordering principle, peano arithmetic (get the sense from this of describing a known set by simple rules), rational numbers, construction of the rational numbers (skip this if it is too difficult), real numbers (skip if too difficult).

    A brief look through this stuff should set you in the correct frame of mind to read Ch.6.
  5. Jun 9, 2013 #4
    I have taken Discrete Mathematics and Pre-Calculus.
  6. Jun 9, 2013 #5


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    Reading the book description from pearson website, it sounds like a rigorous introduction to proof writing. Although exposure to calculus would probably be beneficial, I don't believe it is a necessary condition to read the book.
  7. Jun 10, 2013 #6

    Simon Bridge

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    Doesn't really mean anything to me ... pretend that I am in a different country and culture so I am unfamiliar with your education system ;)

    Generally - an introduction to algebra is unlikely to need calculus as a prerequisite - unless the book says so. Exposure to other areas of math is always helpful though. The main thing is to make sure you have acquired the prerequisite skills that the book expects ... which can be hard to judge before getting the book. That's why I'm asking about your level of learning - are those courses in the secondary or tertiary programs (i.e. for USA: high school or college)?

    Off the names - it looks like you are better equipped to advance along a calculus track than an algebra one - both will teach algebra, but from different perspectives. I would also hope that you have been exposed to continuous mathematics as well as discrete :) If the discrete course had a lot of proofs in it, then you are probably prepared for the kinds of things in an algebra course.
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