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Calc has got me nervous

Discussion in 'Pre-Dental' started by Blarelli, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. Blarelli

    7+ Year Member

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    Well, school started up again today, and I had my first taste of Calculus. Nothing was covered in depth, but the Prof showed several examples of stuff we would be covering, and I admit, I found it pretty intimidating.
    This is really the first class I've ever taken that actually scares me. Does anybody have any study tips or advice they'd be willing to share to help me out?:xf:
     
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  3. mflinchb

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    I found one thing that worked for me in calculus was just paying attention in class, always going to class, and making sure I asked plenty of questions. Math is a subject that I don't understand easily so when it came to questions on HW I would circle them and then go over them in class. When it came to test time I would re-do all circled questions from previous HW's and old exams as well as other book problems. I put in a lot of effort and did well, so if you're really wanting to do well I suggest asking a lot of questions, going to office hours if necessary, and re-do-ing problems until you can do them on your own. Hope this helps!:)
     
  4. PreDent2009

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    If you are taking Calc I you have nothing to worry about. I am a post-bac and did not take any Math, except Business Stats in my undergrad. They exempted me from College Algebra so I can take Calc I for my second-degree in Chem. I am not great in math by any means, and was able to pull out a high A in Calc I this past semester. Don't worry I had the same feeling the first two weeks of class, and the sad part was that it was just a review of college algebra basically. Calculus, especially Calc I is basically being able to do algebra. The actual Calculus material is not hard, it is the algebra that I had to refresh on. If you took College Algebra you should be absolutely fine in the class.

    I will admit that my teacher was awesome, which actually made it an OK class to attend. Also, I do not know about your school, but in mine we had Web Assign HW due atleast once a week. This really helped to keep you fresh on everything that was being taught in class. Goodluck and I am sure you will be fine!
     
  5. Stephie3

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    make friends with the foreign people your school and ask them for help. that's what i did :D
     
  6. Sublimation

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    Math is not a spectator sport. Do as many problems as possible and you should be fine:thumbup:
     
  7. ChrisM07

    ChrisM07 Dental Student
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    Don't be nervous. Although the class and simply the word, CALCULUS, may seem daunting, it's by no means impossible. I am not a math guy either but did well in both Calc I and II. The key is to attend class and if possible, visit the teacher's office hours for extra help. There he/she can give you one on one help with your specific questions (that's what worked for me). Also, you need to do practice problems until you just can't look at them anymore. Once you do that, you can be sure that you have seen everything and nothing on the test will look unfamiliar. If possible, purchase a calculus help book like the Dummies Guide or whatever. They provide extra problems in there too that you can solve and often times, they are more helpful than the textbook itself (mine was crap at explaining anything).

    This might sound stupid, but another key is actually understanding what you are trying to do and to actually apply it to the problems in the specific section. Keeping in mind what you are trying to do helped me in each section of new material.

    ANOTHER tip is to try and get your hands on back tests. Fortunately, my roomate took Calc II before I did so I had access to all of his back tests which REALLY helped me because the test that I took were very similar to the ones he took (calculus is calculus, you can't really change much but the numbers and how you ask the question. The material stays the same).

    Also, try and do atleast an hour of calc work per day. That way, it's all fresh in your head when you go to take the test. You won't really be studying for your test, but rather reviewing for it since you kept up with it (calculus is hell if you fall behind even for just one section).

    Hope this helps. I know it did for me.
    G'luck :thumbup:

    Oh, and P.S. don't listen to other people when they tell you that the course is soooo hard and how theyre failing and when they tell you that this is their 15th time taking it so good luck. Calculus II here at Temple has a 50% fail rate. Refuse to be a part of the 50% and you're golden.
     
  8. bigstix808

    bigstix808 Mac Daddy Member
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    absolutey!!!!!

    calc I is nothing. go to class and do the homework.

    oh yea, i would invest in a TI 89 if you can...or at least a TI 86

    its all about the # of problems you can do before the test...and remember all of the basic "formulas" for doing derivitives and integrals.
     
  9. UCSF2012

    UCSF2012 Tooth Rehab Student
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    Ti-89's rule. Ah, the memories. It became paper weight after high school thou.

    If you want to max out Calc I, do what I did. Don't go to class. Don't purchase a textbook. Don't do homework. Just show up on test day and take the exam. Worked for me.... :smuggrin:
     
  10. ChrisM07

    ChrisM07 Dental Student
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    I would advise against the fancy calculators. Generally, you won't be allowed to use anything in class or on the test for that matter. In high school they told us to get it. I invested the $130 then in college they told us to put em away. It's up to you :rolleyes:. Find out first.
     
  11. Blarelli

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    Yeah, I can't go the calculator route. My schools math department has a strict no calculator policy.
     
  12. bigstix808

    bigstix808 Mac Daddy Member
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    i know a lot of teachers wont let you use them, but i think they are a good tool while learning so you can check answers and what not.

    if you have a brain stem that works, you'll be fine in calc I:D
     
  13. Dentgirl09

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    i hate calc. the end.

    you should be fine though if you do the work you're supposed to. Like everyone else said, don't think you can learn it by just memorizing probs. Actually do them!
     
  14. UCSF2012

    UCSF2012 Tooth Rehab Student
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    You mean, cerebral cortex?
     
  15. bigstix808

    bigstix808 Mac Daddy Member
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    sorry...inside joke...

    guess you couldn't pick up on the sarcasm...
     
  16. cybermech

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    Calculus is all about understanding simpler principles and then working up from there...

    Learn the definition of a limit. Repeat it to yourself before you go to bed every night. Calculus is basically just that: limits applied in different ways. In the beginning, draw out the geometrical shapes that you'll be using to calculate areas. Draw lines that you'll be using to calculate slopes. Then picture them approaching a "limit."

    Next, understand identities and formulas, don't just memorize them. Sometimes, it helps to derive them yourself. If you can't derive them, there are texts that will walk you through the derivations. Graph everything. Understand what each number means and how it affects the graph. Learn how to recognize the basic forms for various equations. Learn to manipulate them with ease.

    With the more abstract concepts, you just need time to practice with problems. There's no way around it.
     
  17. Goggletard

    Goggletard The god of dentin!
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    Oh man... I remember those god awful calc days.....:scared:. Analytical Calculus with Geometry II was my actual arch nemesis in life. Good luck man, just bust your nuts till you get it down, thats really what I had to do to make it happen. I have ALWAYS had problems with all math, and classify myself as complete and total functioning "math-tard". I had to devote at least twice the amount of time I spent hitting the books than I did for everything else.....:( Just prepare yourself for that possibility, and start plugging away.

    Try and get a good grasp on Integrals, the never seemed to go away. They WILL haunt your dreams....:sleep::eek:.
     
  18. harrygt

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    Don't miss a single class, always do the assigned homework on time, use the solution manual to find out the answer for the difficult problems, try to comprehend the solution for each problem, and finally do as many as problems you can. If you fall behind the class, it can get really tough (Procrastination in math = getting killed).
     
  19. rewJW

    rewJW surviving
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    Ugh, Calc .. one of the few classes where I seriously, seriously worked my behind off, actually went to study groups and whatnot, spent hours upon hours studying, did all of the homework, didn't miss a single class, and the best I could do was a B. I put more work into that class than I did quite a few of the classes where I did get high A's (my school didn't do A+'s). I don't think it was the calculus itself because I think I could have understood it much better if I had a different professor - my prof was just ridiculous. And I'll admit, I'm one of those people who hates when people blame their grades on the professor .. but I am so tempted to in this case. But I'll never know if it was the prof or not, because I didn't bother retaking it (a B isn't really that bad after all), didn't have to take calc II (took Statistics instead), and basically won't ever have to worry about calculus ever again as long as I live.

    But seriously, just work your butt off. Hopefully your best is better than mine. lol
     
  20. supraman

    supraman Boston Celtics
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    Calc was the savior of my sGPA lol. The key for me was knowing mastering the examples in the book and just doing all the problems. The professor really won't give you a curveball on the test if you master. I also used to do a lot of googling of things the examples in the book could not clarify. READ the examples, they helped me more than the professor did
     

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