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amsunshine

Self Study Materials for AP Calculus AB?

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Hello friends:

My dds are both currently taking Calculus Honors.  Our plan was to have them take Calc II at the local community college in the fall.  However, it has just come to my attention that the college may not accept a high school Calc Honors as credit for Calc I and may want them to take Calc I again.  I haven't really decided whether we will just go ahead with that or not, but we had initally planned that they would take Calc again in college (for a more rigorous review) and it seems that taking it 3 times is a little much.  Plus, my impression of the CC courses is that they are not particularly rigorous.  Consequently, I'm thinking about having them self-study for the AP Calc AB exam as credit for AP clears the Calc I credit.  Any suggestions for materials that would be useful for self study?  Thanks!

Edited by amsunshine
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What textbook are they using? I've noticed almost all AP Calc classes I've seen use Larson (I'm sure there are exceptions). I suspect it lines up pretty well with the test. Prep Scholar usually has pretty good book reviews for most prep-style books.

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Another option might be to have them take the CLEP cal exam. I can't imagine a CC not giving credit for cal 1 with a passing score. My only caveat would be that not all 4 yr universities accept CLEP credit (but not all accept transfer credit, either.) if you have an idea of where they will be applying to college, check on their CLEP policy.  All of the Us my kids have attended do accept CLEP credit. CLEP exams are much easier schedule-wise bc students can take them anytime yr round. Typically you need to register for the exam about 1 week in advance. They know their score immediately.

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Oh thanks so much for all the ideas!  CLEP may also be the way to go, I hadn’t thought of that!  I’m not really interested in them getting college credit bc they will likely take the class over anyway in college - I just want them to skip an unnecessarily boring and non-rigorous cc class.  Also, Khan academy would definitely work as prep. Their text is unfortunately not Larson - it’s a McGraw-hill text by Smith and Minton.  So I’m guessing they will have gaps to fill for AP.

Edited by amsunshine

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On 12/21/2018 at 11:28 AM, amsunshine said:

Oh thanks so much for all the ideas!  CLEP may also be the way to go, I hadn’t thought of that!  I’m not really interested in them getting college credit bc they will likely take the class over anyway in college - I just want them to skip an unnecessarily boring and non-rigorous cc class.  Also, Khan academy would definitely work as prep. Their text is unfortunately not Larson - it’s a McGraw-hill text by Smith and Minton.  So I’m guessing they will have gaps to fill for AP.

Smith and Minton should be fine. It’s a great text. 

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We used our friend's recommendation.  He teaches AP Calculus at a high school and says this: 

My favorite Calculus book is a Pearson/Prentice Hall book called "Calculus: 
Graphical, Numerical, Algebraic", written by Finney, Demana, Waits, and 
Kennedy.  Dan Kennedy is one of the writers of the Calc. AP tests, and the 
book is easy to read (as far as math books go!).  It is the one math book 
that I think is clearly the best for its subject.

DS found it very simple to use for self study.  He used a suggested schedule from the College Board and a Barron's review at the end to prepare for the BC exam, but it's fine for AB also.  My friend also recommended this course, which is free:

https://www.edx.org/course/ap-calculus-challenging-concepts-from-calculus-ab-calculus-bc#

DS never used it though, so can't comment on how good it is.

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