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How is calculus 1 over the summer?

  1. Oct 24, 2015 #1
    How is calc 1 over the summer? How should I prepare myself? I don't care what grade I get, as long I get a C or B. Any suggestions? Are there helpful websites that cane help me?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 25, 2015 #2
    I would not recommend calculus 1 over the summer unless you already know the material.
  4. Oct 25, 2015 #3
    My parents are wanting me to take it over the summer tho. I can do it, I just need to know what helpful website are there
  5. Oct 25, 2015 #4
    If you care about understanding the material, then taking it over the summer is a horrible idea. If you do want to take it over the summer, start self-studying it now and make sure you know calculus 1 by the summer.
  6. Oct 25, 2015 #5


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    BAD, BAD, BAD!
  7. Oct 25, 2015 #6
    I took high school calculus over a summer semester - 8 weeks - and it was bad news. Had I not self studied calculus for a solid year I wouldn't have been prepared for university. My classmates were often lost and hardly had time to get an understanding before we moved on. Then there were a few whose algebra was weak and they hadn't enough time to remedy that - they were lost in the dust.
    This was only highschool upgrading mind you, not university level calculus.
    If you really wish to gain from your class, I would recommend not to take any math or physics courses over the summer.
  8. Oct 25, 2015 #7
    I would also suggest to get your hands on a textbook and work through, rather than relying on video lectures. But if that's what floats your boat, the MIT videos are okay. They also have problem sets I believe.
  9. Oct 25, 2015 #8

    Vanadium 50

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    Are you an adult?

    How could you possibly know that? More importantly, the question is not whether you can cross the finish line with a passing grade. The question is whether you are building a good foundation for your next classes.

    This is the same advice you got the last time you asked the question. If nothing has changed in the last few weeks, why would you expect the answer to be different?
  10. Oct 25, 2015 #9
    Why calculus 1 over the summer bad? Is there something wrong with it? I really need to take it because, my dads university will only pay until I am 24. If I wait until fall to take calculus, that will set be back TWO more semesters.

    I'm in a community college, and if I want to transfer I need to do it by fall 2017. I should be applying by fall 2016. Since Penn State has rolling admissions :)
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2015
  11. Oct 25, 2015 #10
    some professors and I have noticed that I do much better with one subject. So I don't think taking ONLY calculus will give me a lot of problems.
  12. Oct 25, 2015 #11
    Why did you ask if you got your mind made up already?
  13. Oct 25, 2015 #12
    I just wanted suggestions.
  14. Oct 25, 2015 #13
    Our suggestion is that it is generally a bad idea. Particularly if you want to gain from the course and move into calculus II.
  15. Oct 25, 2015 #14
    If you really really want to make the course, then self-study it and make sure you understand everything before taking the course. That is in my opinion the only way to pass this course comfortably and be prepared for the new material that will follow later.
    If you want suggestions, then just buy the calculus book that you will be using and work through it carefully.
  16. Oct 25, 2015 #15
    Since summer session starts toward the end of May, and finals for spring 2016 end on May 12, I will have plenty of time to watch some videos of calculus. Will coursera be a good website to start right after I finish with my finals?
  17. Oct 25, 2015 #16

    Vanadium 50

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    Sounds like you want validation for a decision you already made.
  18. Oct 25, 2015 #17
    No, it will not. Videos and online courses will not help you much. You need to get an actual book on the topic and work through it carefully.
  19. Oct 25, 2015 #18
    i actually have some old calculus textbook. Should I start from there? Do I need some precalc background before I can read some of the topics?
  20. Oct 25, 2015 #19
    Yes, start with those. It is not strictly necessary to know a lot of precalculus, most of it should be covered adequately by the calculus textbook anyway.
    It is crucial to be solid in algebra, trigonometry and geometry though.
  21. Oct 25, 2015 #20
    Where should I start from? What chapter? Limits? Derivatives.
  22. Oct 25, 2015 #21
    You'll need to know limits and derivatives. Start reading from where you're comfortable. I don't know the specifics of neither the book nor you, so I can't suggest anything.
  23. Oct 25, 2015 #22
    I have the old versions of calculus stewart. I think 3rd and 4th edition with one solution book
  24. Oct 25, 2015 #23
    OK, that's good. Start reading it from the beginning then, skipping over anything you're really comfortable with. Bu the summer you should know limits, derivatives, rate of change problems.
  25. Oct 25, 2015 #24


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    Differential Calculus is USUALLY the course used to force you to mentally integrate all of your previous math learning. What students MIGHT be lacking is a solid knowledge of trigonometry. Only you can evaluate your knowledge of algebra, geometry, and trig. To answer your question, there is no reason that the FACTS you learn should take more than about a week or two. There is plenty of reason to believe that the SKILLS you should learn require a lot longer. Doing problems - as long as the answers are also given - might be ok. I doubt it, but its a start. I can remember from my first year of calculus on more than one occassion a problem taking the professor the whole hour to go over. That's not the type of thing you're likely to learn on your own, and it certainly will NOT be something that you can find in a book...and I'd doubt it likely that the superficial treatment they give in summer session will, either. Anyway, for the gifted, willing to study on their own in-depth and for the superficial who just want "the grade", summer school is adequate. For the weaker student (I include myself, I had an A average in high school through trig and calculus) I don't recommend it - IF you're going into the engineering or hard sciences or economics. Otherwise go for it. But you've obviously already decided "what"; the question you seem to actually have is "how". The answer to "how" is do enough problems so that you can pick up any textbook and do 8 out of 10 of any problem set. That requires spending the time to learn the SKILL and having several books with lots of problems and answers as well as lots of examples will be very important.
  26. Oct 25, 2015 #25
    I agree with ogg. Problems are vital. If you don't do lots of problems, it's useless studying it now before the summer.
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