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Calculus Good precalculus and calculus book for a beginner for physic

  1. Sep 12, 2015 #1
    Hi

    I'm 16 years old, the physics and maths in school is really easy and it quickly becomes boring. So I wish to study outside of school, can you please recommend me some good books on calculus?

    I am a beginner in the subject and only know the big picture of what calculus actually is, so nothing too advanced please, but still challenging.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 12, 2015 #2

    micromass

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  4. Sep 12, 2015 #3
  5. Sep 12, 2015 #4
    Michael Spivak's Calculus is quiet challenging, his The Hitchhiker's guide to Calculus should be easy enough as a first introduction (it is better to regard it as a companion). Personally, I used Stewart's Calculus as a first exposure. Also have a look at these lectures from MIT OpenCourseware:
    As well as Khan|Academy videos on Calc. (differential calculus then integral calculus)

    Have fun!
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2015
  6. Sep 12, 2015 #5

    micromass

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    OP: definitely do NOT do these if you're new to calculus.
     
  7. Sep 12, 2015 #6
    Hahahaha, ok then :)
     
  8. Sep 12, 2015 #7
    Thank you. I will look into this.
     
  9. Sep 13, 2015 #8

    vanhees71

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    I'd not recommend a non-standard analysis textbook for a beginner, particularly if he is interested in physics more than in pure math. Unfortunately, I cannot recommend a calculus textbook, because all my favorites are in German.
     
  10. Sep 13, 2015 #9

    micromass

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    The good thing about Keisler is that it teaches both standard as nonstandard calculus, so you get the best of both worlds.
    And I think that infinitesimals show up more in physics than pure math.
     
  11. Sep 13, 2015 #10

    vanhees71

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    That's true. The only problem with nonstandard analysis is that no physics book uses its language, and it can be difficult, particularly for a beginner, if different books use different concepts. I don't say this book is bad, because I don't know it, but I just warn against possible problems when using a nonstandard-analysis textbook as a beginner. It's of course always good, to also look at all kinds of concepts for the same subject, but for this you should first have some basic knowledge about this subject, and that's most easily achieved by using standard material. As I said, I don't know introductory calculus textbooks. For physics, I'd recommend one of the excellent introductory-physics textbooks at the entry level of universities. I've just seen the newest (German) edition by Tipler, which is excellent. I also like Haliday&Resnick for that purpose. I only warn against the socalled "calculus-free" approach. This simply doesn't make sense. It's even more difficult to learn about physics. So it's a good approach to learn vector algebra and calculus in parallel with classical non-relativistic mechanics, which still is the backbone of all physics education. A bit later, as a first approach to the more theoretical side, I'd think that the Feynman lectures are still a very good (but tough) choice, because of Feynman's emphasis of physics intuition with a pragmatic use of math.
     
  12. Sep 13, 2015 #11
    Thank you for these great tips, I have actually ordered the Feynman Lectures, and I'm also studying vector algebra and standard mechanics in school and at home.
     
  13. Sep 13, 2015 #12

    vanhees71

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    Great! And this forum is great to discuss problems!
     
  14. Sep 13, 2015 #13
    I know, one of the primary reasons for signing up. I will post them on this forum if I ever need any help.
     
  15. Sep 14, 2015 #14
    I buy calculus books at the lowest prices on the internet regularly. Not one site has the lowest of all. It's all over the place at all of the book sites. It really varies on the title of the book. There is a great tool that you require to use is a book comparison site. You enter the title of the book and author and it will search at all of the book sites such as: Amazon, Barnesandnoble, AbeBooks, Zapper, Powells, etc.
     
  16. Oct 1, 2015 #15
    "Calculus made easy" by silvanus p Thompson. Fantastic short book that has been in print for over 100 years. i learnt from it myself and still have my copy.
     
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