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Should I take Pre-Calculus

  1. May 6, 2015 #1
    So I have been out of Math Courses for 5 years then this semester Spring Semester I completed Pre Algebra with an A, this Summer I have two Semesters of which I am taking College Algebra for Science and Engineering Majors and Plane Trigonometry.

    My question is during the Fall Semester should I take Pre-Calculus to reinforce what I learned during the summer semesters or should I go ahead and enter Calculus?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 7, 2015 #2
    What's the difference between pre-calculus and college algebra?
     
  4. May 7, 2015 #3
    College Algebra for Science and Engineering Majors
    MATH 1414 is the study of functions, models of functions, graphs of polynomial and rational functions, real and complex numbers, radical functions, exponential and logarithmic functions, inequalities, conic sections, sequences, series, matrices, and systems of linear and nonlinear equations.

    Plane Trigonometry
    Plane Trigonometry is the study of definitions of the trigonometric functions, special angles, fundamental identities, solution of right triangles, circular measure, trigonometric reductions, solution of oblique triangles, functions of a composite angle, trigonometric equations, inverse trigonometric functions, polar representation, DeMoivre’s Theorem, and graphs.

    Pre-Calculus
    Pre-calculus is the study of algebraic functions and their graphs, inverse functions, polynomial functions, rational and irrational functions, exponential and logarithmic functions, trigonometric functions, inverse trigonometric functions, Law of Sines, Law of Cosines, and analytic geometry.

    Calculus 1
    Calculus I is the study of limits and continuity, the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus; definition of the derivative of a function and techniques of differentiation; applications of the derivative to maximizing or minimizing a function; the chain rule, mean value theorem, and rate of change problems; curve sketching; definite and indefinite integration of algebraic, trigonometric, and transcendental functions, with an application to calculation of areas.

    I am taking Algebra S/E and Trig during the summer the question is should I take Pre-Calculus to reinforce what I took during the summer or jump straight into Calculus 1?
     
  5. May 7, 2015 #4
    So they sound roughly the same. If you get an A again I would think your good to take on calculus.
     
  6. May 7, 2015 #5

    symbolipoint

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    What does your college's placement testing indicate for you? Did you study Intermediate Algebra all the way through and earn at least an A? That data may be very useful in knowing what you might study and in what order.
     
  7. May 7, 2015 #6

    symbolipoint

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    Next course should be a full semester trigonometry, and if good, the course after that can be Calculus 1.
     
  8. May 7, 2015 #7
    Thanks that probably will be the deciding factor.
    I took the Accuplacer a few years ago and it said I was good for Pre-calculus, but when I took the course it was too advanced, then I took College Algebra and the same with that, the pace was too fast... I am currently finishing up with Intermediate Algebra and I will pass with an A.
    Well since I am finishing with Intermediate Algebra, during the summer I will be taking College Algebra for Science and Engineering Majors and Trigonometry. As stated in the previous comment, it depends on how well I perform in College Algebra and how well I feel like I am in Trig, at the time I have to make a payment.
     
  9. May 7, 2015 #8

    symbolipoint

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    You are right on-track. The college algebra and the pre-calculus were definitely too advanced for you. You needed what you are enrolled now... your Intermediate Algebra. Your next courses should be either College Algebra, followed by Trigonometry; OR the Pre-Calculus course and then a separate Trigonometry only if you believe you need it.

    Note that You CAN take courses in this order: Intermediate Algebra, Trigonometry, Pre-Calculus, Calculus 1.

    I have heard of some students taking Intermediate Algebra, then Trigonometry, and then going from that into Calculus 1. How good an idea that is depends on the student and advice he can get from faculty in the Mathematics department.
     
  10. May 7, 2015 #9
    Thanks today was the day to make the payment for the mini-semester and the first summer, since there was not a mini-semester available for Algebra for S&E I am taking it in during the first summer semester, Trigonometry will be in second. Then Pre-Calculus or Calculus in the fall...

    Thanks Symbolipoint and Paisiello2 for the help. :D
     
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