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Lawana

Calculus; career options

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I know I have read here many times the recommendation for students to retake calc at university even if they did well in calc in high school. Ds got a 4 on the AP Calc AB test and is annoyed that I am suggesting he retake lol. Will someone please give me some specific reasons why it is good to retake? Thanks

 

Ds is undecided in his major, but since math and science are strengths for him, he will likely persue something that will make use of those areas. He is also strongly extroverted, and wants and needs to do something that will have lots of interpersonal contact. Any suggestions are appreciated. He is also quite well rounded, with no real academic weaknesses.

 

He is attending UGA this fall.

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I think it depends on his major.  He should talk to someone in the math dept and ask them how students who have scored like that on the AP exam have traditionally done in the next level of calculus (whatever that would be for him, depending on what credit the school will award).  One good reason to re-take at the beginning is that it will make calc into a relatively easy class vs a challenging class as soon as he gets to school.

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Some kids retake because they feel their skills are shaky. Some retake to goose their GPAs. Some retake to get used to a college style math class because they're intimidated by the large lecture class where homework and quizzes count for little and your grade depends on the midterm and final.

 

I personally don't think you should require a retake if your child isn't keen, but solid calculus skills are important to many science and engineering majors so it probably wouldn't be a waste.

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If he goes into an engineering field, many universities will require that students re-take a Calculus for Engineers sequence instead of standard Calculus, or just won't award credit for the AP score.

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My DH taught sophomore level Electrical Engineering classes for 5 years. He saw a pattern some students who only took AP Calculus did not get a strong enough foundation for the required math in his class. Both my dd are going into engineering and have/will take Calculus I again. It is easier to take Calc I as a freshman that have to relearn/refresh later in their college career.

 

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For a 4 on Calc AB AP I think he could place into Calc 2 except for a very few elite tech schools (MIT, Ga Tech, ...) and they usually require a 5 on the Calc BC exam for any credit.

I think your student should do fine. Of course review a few topics before heading off to college.

 

Does the school use a  math placement test?

added:

http://www.math.uga.edu/placement

 

update:

Have your student look through a couple of these finals:

http://www.math.uga.edu/2250final

 

 

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