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Is a B in Calculus 1 and 2 the end for me?

  1. Oct 25, 2014 #1
    Hi all,

    So I'm pretty devastated(and I'm to be blamed). I'm a first year cs and math major. So the thing is my math course is a full year course with 5 class tests and 2 finals(worth 2/3 of the final mark)

    Slacking off and poor time management gave me the privilege of failing all my class tests. However for the finals I managed to pull out a 74% and a 100% in my 2 papers respectively giving me a B overall for the class(75% is an A in my system).

    So yeah, although my 2 last marks were acceptable my final grade is a B(my own fault). Now the thing is I'm scared my career is over since I was aspiring on going into a top 5 for an MS in Computer Science.

    Will that B hurt me as maths is my second major? I got As in the rest(CS, Applied. Math, Physics and Probability and Stats).
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 25, 2014 #2


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    I don't know what the requirements for entry in to an MS program in computer science where you are, but a B in a class will definitely not be the end of your career.

    The courses only get more difficult as you go, so you're going to have to work on your time management and study skills. What you've done to get by in this class isn't going to fly in junior/senior level courses. You also need to prepare yourself for the possibility of not making perfect straight A's anymore when you start taking higher level courses. I think it's good that this happened earlier on so you can learn to cope with not making an A in every course and it doesn't completely devastate you when you're in 3rd or 4th year.
  4. Oct 26, 2014 #3
    I got a B in calculus in high school, and I got a PhD in math. I have heard of people failing it and getting PhDs. I even got C's in diff eq and linear algebra. I just made a big come back later on because I changed my major to math from EE and then smoked all the proof-based courses and impressed the hell out of my professors in the last two years. I barely got into grad school (only one place out of five took me), but I did it.
  5. Oct 26, 2014 #4
    I'm not saying everyone who gets a B or even an A in calculus is capable of getting a PhD--the PhD is about a googloplex to the googloplex power times as difficult as calculus, so I don't mean to be TOO encouraging, but it just doesn't rule you out by a long shot.
  6. Oct 26, 2014 #5
    Don't feel discouraged by this one grade. Use it as a motivator to improve in the courses you're taking now and those you will take in the future. I know of people who have gotten B's in Calc I, and even slightly lower grades in undergrad math, but they went on to obtain PhDs in MIT, Harvard, and the like.
  7. Oct 26, 2014 #6
    Thanks people. It's nice too see some great comeback. This setback is what has become my motivation to do better. My love for math is still here, I probably was just lost. But this experience has been an eye opener. :)
  8. Oct 27, 2014 #7


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    Just one quick note.... At the beginning of my undergrad career I was one of those didn't study didn't do his homework jerks.
    I ended up getting a 2.15 gpa for my first year. I pulled my head out of my butt, and actually started paying attention and had a 3.7 or higher in every semester after that. Even though my cum GPA suffered, I didn't suffer at all for applying for masters programs and jobs, because people understand that people change. You'll be fine!!!!!!!! :)

    Also another note I found that the more advanced EE classes were actually easier. I know it sounds weird, but at least for me the more interested I am in a topic, the more effort I put in and the easier it is too learn. This was true for many of my classmates as well. Even though it was still difficult, we found the material enjoyable therefore we had no problems putting in the effort. make sure you like your upper level classes!
  9. Oct 27, 2014 #8
    Same here. I didn't study, didn't do my homework. But in the end I decided I had to work and managed to do decent in my finals. I hope I've changed for the better. Deep down I love what I do, just was lazy. Now I'm looking forward to next year where I will do more in depth stuff which I'm sure I'll really enjoy. :)
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