Disclaimer: I wasted a lot of time reading the forums here and elsewhere, instead of actually studying. Mathwonk, in his wisdom, once told me to "stop dancing around the fire". Now, I'm pressed for time and I need to do everything quickly, and will have to use the holidays to really study properly. I am currently taking a mechanics as well a math methods course. In math methods, we started with some vectors and also the coordinate systems, and later on, calculus (that's where we are now). Things move quickly, and I soon realised how far more useful the tutorials are to the actual lectures. We are using mathematics that we haven't learned yet, or haven't had the time to properly learn, in our mechanics course. As far as single variable calculus is concerned, it's fine, but last week, the teacher used something that looked like vector calculus (I could be wrong...) when teaching circular motion. He also mentioned the Taylor and Maclaurin series which we haven't covered yet. At the same time, in our math tutorial, the tutor is teaching us about the Levi Civita, and suggested we use Arfken and Weber's book to learn vector analysis. Well, spending too much time here when I didn't have school taught me a few things about physics education...one of those is that this book is a graduate level text. Our math methods is starting from the ground up (but going quickly - it's based on the book by Bence, Hobson, and Riley), while at the same time, we're told to use a book that assumes knowledge of material we won't finish doing until the 3rd semester! I'm also having a hard time getting an intuition of what spherical and cylindrical coordinates are. I had to complete my homework by just using formulae I found online, and I have no idea what I'm doing. I don't have an "intuition" for it, same thing with using vectors. The calculus used so far in mechanics is fine, as I've done calc before, but I still need to review it. I went into this program knowing it would be hard work. I am not complaining about that. I just don't know where to go with this. Everybody else is as confused as I am. There are people in the 3rd semester who are taking mechanics I and math methods I (some even the lab), on top of all the other courses. For whatever reason, the requirements for courses are quite "flexible", so people can still take more courses if they want. Anyway, it's scary to see so many persons having trouble...and after talking with them, it's evident that they are NOT stupid. There are clear issues with the organisation of the program, but I can't do anything about that now. I just need to figure out how to keep my head up, and hopefully get good grades. In terms of schedule, I have statics h/w on Mondays (doesn't count, but need to do them to understand), mechanics h/w on Tuesdays (possibility of bonus marks), lab report and reading for Thursdays, and on Fridays, I have my math homework due. For math, 20% of my grade is from the weekly sheets. So, what ends up happening, is that I do all of my work one or two days before they're due, and by the time the weekend comes, I'm too tired to even want to do anything more. So, I haven't really been able to study more to try to understand what's going on. So, I guess what I'm asking is what books I can use for a quick review of calculus, and how I can learn vectors and spherical/circular/etc coordinate systems. I just need an "intuition" for it, especially the coordinate systems. And how I could manage all of that work without going nuts. So far, it's OK, but it's taxing, and I don't think it will be a good long term plan. I need to change! I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on this. Thank you.