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Taking Calculus 1 again. I don't understand algebra. Should I give up?

  1. Nov 23, 2012 #1
    maybe I posted this in the wrong place.
    I signed up for an online university calculus course. I forgot most of algabra. Should I drop it and try to learn my stuff first? Can I learn it in 5 weeks? They give you about 6 months to complete the online course. I figure I can dedicate 15-20 hrs a week to studying.

    Thanks!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 23, 2012 #2

    Zondrina

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    Indeed the wrong section, academic guidance would've been more appropriate.

    Not knowing algebra is no reason to give up. Practice is key for algebra. If you dedicate that much time to studying per week, I beleive you will be able to do anything you want.
     
  4. Nov 23, 2012 #3
    I had forgotten most of my algebra as well (4-5 yrs since my last math class), and am doing okay in calculus. It comes back to you with practice.
     
  5. Nov 24, 2012 #4

    symbolipoint

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    Depends on you. You need to know what you can do; we do not know.

    How far and how well did you learn Algebra and when was the last time you studied or reviewed it? If you had 3 or 4 years of mostly successful Algebra study with grades of B or better, then maybe the risk is fine.
     
  6. Nov 24, 2012 #5
    If you really don't understand algebra, you're not going to succeed in calculus. Think of math like you would a language. Learning algebra is pretty much learning how to read, speak and write. Learning calculus is like learning Shakespeare. How are you going to learn Shakespeare if you can't read, speak or write?
     
  7. Nov 25, 2012 #6
    that doesnt help him
     
  8. Nov 25, 2012 #7
    the only thing to do is practice. thats all i can say. i went from 8% - 95% math11 because i started going to class and practicing.

    there is absolutely no reason why you can't understand algebra or do whatever you want in life.

    no one is born gifted, i don't care about iq its meaningless. its all about hard work, practice, and spending a LOT of time. if you are not willing to do that, you will fail in ANYTHING you do.
     
  9. Nov 25, 2012 #8

    Vanadium 50

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    I think it does. If his foundation is shaky, it makes sense for him to strengthen it before moving on.
     
  10. Nov 25, 2012 #9

    symbolipoint

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    It does help him if the comment does not discourage him. The analogy which Angry Citizen gave is very good.
     
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