I want to learn calculus on a budget

  • #1
Nick tringali
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Hello everyone,
Last year I took pre calc and that was the highest math I was required to take for my biology degree. I’ve recently became interested in learning calculus. Does anyone have a good online course recommendation I could buy in order to learn all of calc 1? I was looking on udemy, but the calc courses had only like 16 videos. I can’t imagine that all of calc 1 would fit in only 16 videos. Let me know if you guys have any thoughts.
 
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  • #2
Dr.D
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Why not start with what you have found, then add to it if you think it necessary? There are any number of calculus books on the market that you can purchase (many can be downloaded for free) to see what else there is.
 
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  • #3
Office_Shredder
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Coursera has a number of options

https://www.coursera.org/search?query=Calculus

I don't know which of them are good, but you could try skimming through a couple and see if any of them catch your fancy.

The University of Pennsylvania has four parts on it that combined seem to contain a lot of content.

https://www.coursera.org/search?query=UPenn calculus
For some reason they also have a standalone course called single variable calculus that does not appear to actually have that much stuff in it.

(You shouldn't need to pay for anything on Coursera)
 
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  • #4
vela
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Hello everyone,
Last year I took pre calc and that was the highest math I was required to take for my biology degree. I’ve recently became interested in learning calculus. Does anyone have a good online course recommendation I could buy in order to learn all of calc 1? I was looking on udemy, but the calc courses had only like 16 videos. I can’t imagine that all of calc 1 would fit in only 16 videos. Let me know if you guys have any thoughts.
It depends on how long the videos are. That said, the first course that came up when I searched for "calculus 1" on udemy had 200+ videos. I didn't see any that had only 16.

What's more important, I think, is the total number of hours. In a typical semester in a regular class, you might expect three hours of lecture per week for fifteen weeks, so 45 hours total. That should give you an idea of how much time is reasonable.

What I'd look for are many relatively short videos about ten minutes in length where the teacher can explain one concept thoroughly and then you spend time on your own practicing and making sure you understand the basic material before you move on to the next video.
 
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  • #5
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Khan academy or mathispower4u.com

both are comprehensive, both have short ten minute videos and both are free.
 
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  • #6
CalcNerd
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Since you have a degree in Biology, you might be best served by Calculus for life sciences type of textbook. Literally search for 'Calculus for the Life sciences'. These Calculus books aren't as mathematically rigorous as the typical Calculus text, but to their credit, are quite a bit easier to self study and will concentrate on exponitional and logrithmic functions which will have an immediate use to you.
 
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  • #7
Hello everyone,
Last year I took pre calc and that was the highest math I was required to take for my biology degree. I’ve recently became interested in learning calculus. Does anyone have a good online course recommendation I could buy in order to learn all of calc 1? I was looking on udemy, but the calc courses had only like 16 videos. I can’t imagine that all of calc 1 would fit in only 16 videos. Let me know if you guys have any thoughts.

Look for Professor Leonard on You Tube. He uploaded Calculus l, ll, and lll. All three courses as taught in his university classroom. Great teacher. To learn any course, take notes and do all the practice questions on your own. I am also looking forward to learning Calculus. I am 56 years old.
 
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  • #8
Dr.D
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I am also looking forward to learning Calculus. I am 56 years old.
It is never too late, and you will be amazed at the new doors that open up.
 
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  • #9
It is never too late, and you will be amazed at the new doors that open up.

Not looking for new doors to open. I've always wanted to learn calculus. I will find time, don't know how much time, to learn calculus l, ll, and lll. I work 40 overnight hours, which means calculus will be studied on my days off or when time allows.
 
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  • #10
PeroK
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Hello everyone,
Last year I took pre calc and that was the highest math I was required to take for my biology degree. I’ve recently became interested in learning calculus. Does anyone have a good online course recommendation I could buy in order to learn all of calc 1? I was looking on udemy, but the calc courses had only like 16 videos. I can’t imagine that all of calc 1 would fit in only 16 videos. Let me know if you guys have any thoughts.
For all things calculus, there's also:

https://tutorial.math.lamar.edu/
 
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  • #12
Hello everyone,
Last year I took pre calc and that was the highest math I was required to take for my biology degree. I’ve recently became interested in learning calculus. Does anyone have a good online course recommendation I could buy in order to learn all of calc 1? I was looking on udemy, but the calc courses had only like 16 videos. I can’t imagine that all of calc 1 would fit in only 16 videos. Let me know if you guys have any thoughts.

Nick,

Try calculusworkshop.com. It's not free but Jenn is very good in terms of communicating to her audience. Steps are written on the board. An exam at the end of each lesson for clarity and learning. Hundreds of sample questions worked out on the board.
 
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  • #13
Dr.D
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Not looking for new doors to open. I've always wanted to learn calculus. I will find time, don't know how much time, to learn calculus l, ll, and lll. I work 40 overnight hours, which means calculus will be studied on my days off or when time allows.
If you do not see the new doors open, it will become simply a pointless grind. Why bother to learn calculus if it does not lead you to some new insights?
 
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  • #14
If you do not see the new doors open, it will become simply a pointless grind. Why bother to learn calculus if it does not lead you to some new insights?
New doors in terms of learning something I've always dreamed of learning is correct but not in terms of employment. I am 56 years old. I have another 9 or 10 years of work left. Becoming a math teacher at 56 is not my objective.
 
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  • #15
Dr.D
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New doors in terms of learning something I've always dreamed of learning is correct but not in terms of employment. I am 56 years old. I have another 9 or 10 years of work left. Becoming a math teacher at 56 is not my objective.
Opening new doors does not necessarily mean new employment opportunities. It means new insights, new ways of looking at how systems work. I am a lot older than you, but I am still looking for new things I can learn. When I stop learning, I will be dead.
 
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  • #16
Opening new doors does not necessarily mean new employment opportunities. It means new insights, new ways of looking at how systems work. I am a lot older than you, but I am still looking for new things I can learn. When I stop learning, I will be dead.
Very good. Now let's get back to math. Questions posted later.
 
  • #17
MidgetDwarf
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just buy BOOK.


Thomas Calculus With Analytic Geometry 3rd edition. Short, lucid, and very informative explanations. Only buy this edition of Thomas.

Edwin E Moise: Calculus

A book that is in-between the modern Thomas/Stewart Calculus books and Apostol/Courant. Leans more toward Courant.

One of my favorite books, and reading Moise's book put me on the path to becoming a mathematician...
 
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  • #18
Mondayman
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I know you asked for calculus, but I'll recommend a followup book as well. I recommend these books:

Calculus by Morris Kline.

Ordinary Differential Equations by Morris Tenebaum.

Both are Dover and not very expensive. I think Kline should be supplemented with something that has more problems. But both books contain a lot of interesting applications and are very readable to beginners.
 
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  • #19
MidgetDwarf
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I know you asked for calculus, but I'll recommend a followup book as well. I recommend these books:

Calculus by Morris Kline.

Ordinary Differential Equations by Morris Tenebaum.

Both are Dover and not very expensive. I think Kline should be supplemented with something that has more problems. But both books contain a lot of interesting applications and are very readable to beginners.
Although Kline has some merits (I read it as bathroom reading material). It is extremely verbose... Thats one thing I dislike about math books. For the same reason, I dislike Strang: Linear Algebra.

One of the issues that I had with Kline, that sometimes his sentences leave a bit of ambiguity, or not entirely clear without rereading all of the words again. I do not have a specific example on hand.

The Tenebaum book is cool. I much prefer Ross: Ordinary Differential Equations. Both are around the same price, but find Ross more user friendly...
 
  • #20
Mondayman
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Although Kline has some merits (I read it as bathroom reading material). It is extremely verbose... Thats one thing I dislike about math books. For the same reason, I dislike Strang: Linear Algebra.

One of the issues that I had with Kline, that sometimes his sentences leave a bit of ambiguity, or not entirely clear without rereading all of the words again. I do not have a specific example on hand.

The Tenebaum book is cool. I much prefer Ross: Ordinary Differential Equations. Both are around the same price, but find Ross more user friendly...
I'll agree about Kline, it's best supplemented with a better textbook. The older editions of Thomas seem to be good. New calculus textbooks are like $25,000, so I was thinking of what's affordable.

I am currently using Calculus: A Complete Course by Adams to refresh my memory of calculus. It's an alright choice, but I am mostly using it because I want to justify the money I spent on it six years ago.

As far as DE go, no matter what, avoid the textbooks by Zill. I used the sixth edition, and sweet Jesus did I ever hate that book.
 
  • #21
Try The Humongous Book of Calculus Problems by Michael Kelly. This book only covers Calculus 1 and 2. Written for people that don't speak math (like me).
 

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  • #22
Although Kline has some merits (I read it as bathroom reading material). It is extremely verbose... Thats one thing I dislike about math books. For the same reason, I dislike Strang: Linear Algebra.

One of the issues that I had with Kline, that sometimes his sentences leave a bit of ambiguity, or not entirely clear without rereading all of the words again. I do not have a specific example on hand.

The Tenebaum book is cool. I much prefer Ross: Ordinary Differential Equations. Both are around the same price, but find Ross more user friendly...
Have you ever Strang videos on Linear Algebra? My God! Strang's teaching style will put you to death from boredom. No pun intended.
 
  • #23
MidgetDwarf
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Have you ever Strang videos on Linear Algebra? My God! Strang's teaching style will put you to death from boredom. No pun intended.
I don't really care for videos. I seen a few, and they appear to be a lot better than his book. I recall learning a new insight by viewing the few videos I have seen...

I would not say that they are boring if one is naturally interested in mathematics, and not of the plug and chug variety...
 
  • #24
I don't really care for videos. I seen a few, and they appear to be a lot better than his book. I recall learning a new insight by viewing the few videos I have seen...

I would not say that they are boring if one is naturally interested in mathematics, and not of the plug and chug variety...
Do you prefer learning from textbooks? If so, what are thoughts concerning the "Dummies" series which have become very popular. You know, Precalculus For Dummies, Calculus For Dummies, Geometry For Dummies, etc.
 
  • #25
MidgetDwarf
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Do you prefer learning from textbooks? If so, what are thoughts concerning the "Dummies" series which have become very popular. You know, Precalculus For Dummies, Calculus For Dummies, Geometry For Dummies, etc.
I never looked at such books, or had the need to do so. Yes, my preference are books. The only series I have watched from start to finish are Walter Lewin Physics Series, Feynman's, and some guy (forget his name) that based his lectures on Artin's Algebra book.

I usually followed the book recommendations of Micromass and Mathwonk. Also looking into my school library to find a few gems.
 
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  • #26
Mondayman
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Perusing through a university library is a good idea. Some places allow non-students to sign and take out books, with students getting preferences of course.

I whole heartedly recommend learning from a textbook and not the For Dummies series. Video lectures are a good supplement sometimes, depending on how one learns.

Take advantage of PF and ask questions here.
 
  • #27
I never looked at such books, or had the need to do so. Yes, my preference are books. The only series I have watched from start to finish are Walter Lewin Physics Series, Feynman's, and some guy (forget his name) that based his lectures on Artin's Algebra book.

I usually followed the book recommendations of Micromass and Mathwonk. Also looking into my school library to find a few gems.
I like Professor Leonard on You Tube. He is a great teacher. Textbooks are great but it depends on the book and the student. I like math books by David Cohen, James Stewart (both deceased), Michael Sullivan, Michael Kelly and Elayne Martin Gay.
 
  • #28
MidgetDwarf
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Just wanted to make a slight correction. The edition of Thomas Calculus with Analytic Geometry is the third edition. I believed I had typed it above, but I didn't, and I can no longer edit the above post.
 
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  • #29
MidgetDwarf
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I like Professor Leonard on You Tube. He is a great teacher. Textbooks are great but it depends on the book and the student. I like math books by David Cohen, James Stewart (both deceased), Michael Sullivan, Michael Kelly and Elayne Martin Gay.
Im familiar with those books. Stewart is good as a place to do more exercises. But it does not separate itself from the run of the mill calculus books available. I do not own a copy anymore, but I strongly remember it having a circular proof of Arc-Length. Or this was maybe another book...

Cohen is rather large, but provides excellent exercises, and some a bit challenging. I used it for my Pre-Calculus class. If you have Cohen, no need to look at Sullivan, Gay books. Cohen contains them and much more...
 
  • #30
Im familiar with those books. Stewart is good as a place to do more exercises. But it does not separate itself from the run of the mill calculus books available. I do not own a copy anymore, but I strongly remember it having a circular proof of Arc-Length. Or this was maybe another book...

Cohen is rather large, but provides excellent exercises, and some a bit challenging. I used it for my Pre-Calculus class. If you have Cohen, no need to look at Sullivan, Gay books. Cohen contains them and much more...

I have a David Cohen precalculus book.

I have a Ron Larson precalculus book.

I have a Michael Sullivan & Kathleen Miranda.
 
  • #31
Just wanted to make a slight correction. The edition of Thomas Calculus with Analytic Geometry is the third edition. I believed I had typed it above, but I didn't, and I can no longer edit the above post.

Calculus With Analytic Geometry is different than a regular Calculus 1, 2, or ven 3 book. Yes?
If not, what is the difference?
 
  • #32
MidgetDwarf
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Calculus With Analytic Geometry is different than a regular Calculus 1, 2, or ven 3 book. Yes?
If not, what is the difference?
Concise, straight to the point, and clear. It is not cluttered by many diagrams on a page. Each diagram is memorable, and conveys the information in a lucid manner. Nice explanation of the Theorem of Pappus, Shell-Method. Uses analytic geometry to give an explanation of how these ideas make sense, and fit together. Gives a person an intuitive explanation of the calculus, something the run of the mill calculus books do not..


Here is another example. The 3rd edition of Thomas goes through the derivation of trig identities. Something Stewart does now. Which can be useful when taking a course in ordinary differential equations, but you don't remember the common trig identities. However, you learned a simple derivation of them...
 
  • #33
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Theres usually two levels of Calculus for college
- 1,2,3 version for 1st year college students
- Advanced Calculus for complex analysis for science and engineering students.
 
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  • #34
symbolipoint
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I have a David Cohen precalculus book.

I have a Ron Larson precalculus book.

I have a Michael Sullivan & Kathleen Miranda.
The Ron Larson book is (by experience) very good. I am unfamiliar with any of the others you listed. I have used the/a Larson precalculus book for my own review study.
 
  • #35
symbolipoint
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Calculus With Analytic Geometry is different than a regular Calculus 1, 2, or ven 3 book. Yes?
If not, what is the difference?
No. Not typically. What is any particular Calculus book omitting?

jedishrfu in post #33 has a clearer understanding. If in doubt, check that posting.
 

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