Calculus I - Mathematics 141, Sections 5, 6, 9, and 10

Frank Thorne - Fall 2015
University of South Carolina

Welcome to Math 141! Calculus is a beautiful, important, challenging, and fascinating subject.

Instructional Staff :

Learning outcomes:

Successful students will:

This could describe any math class. Typically, all of this is best learned in some specific context. Therefore, successful students will also:

Warning. There is a ton of homework. It will be collected and graded. That is because this is the most effective way for you to learn. But:

Text : Thomas, Calculus, Early Transcendentals, 13th edition. (Note that this has changed from last year.) The book is available for $141.15 from the campus bookstore; although high, this price represents a substantial discount which our department negotiated with the publisher. The book is bundled with access to MyMathLab, which will not be used in this section of 141. (It may be used in 142 and/or 241, depending on which sections you take.) The book is not a "custom edition", and you are also welcome to obtain the book elsewhere if you can find it.

I also highly recommend Calculus Made Easy by Silvanus Thompson. If nothing else, read the epilogue on p. 283.

Meeting schedule :

The 10:50 and 12:00 lectures are interchangeable; if you cannot make your lecture on a given day, please attend the other one.

Exam schedule :

All exams will be held in the usual classroom (LC 412), during class meetings (except for the final).

All questions on all exams will be taken verbatim from the homeworks. (The required and `additional' problems are both fair game.)

Practice final exams: See below.

Practice midterm exams: These were two of my midterm exams from a previous year. Note that the selection of material was a little bit different.

Exam 1, solutions.

Exam 2, solutions.

Homework : Homework is due to your TA by 5:00 p.m., on Fridays except as otherwise noted below. (Your TA will tell you where to turn in your homework.) The homework will be graded and returned to you, according to the following scheme. Each homework is worth 10 points. Out of that, three problems will be selected each week (randomly, for the most part) and graded carefully, and each is worth 2 points. The remaining 4 points are for overall quality and completion.

All the homework assignments can be downloaded from this website (see below). They are long. Do not start the night before.They are also very important.

Each homework will have ''required'' and ''additional'' problems. The additional problems are not required; it is recommended that you check that you know how to do them, and they might appear on exams.

All exam problems will be taken verbatim from the homework assignments.

Grading :

You will be graded both on correctness and on quality of exposition. The standard is that someone who doesn't know the answer should be able to easily follow your work. Any work that is confusing, ambiguous, or poorly explained will not receive full credit.

The grade cutoffs are: A for 88%, B+ for 84%, B for 76%, C+ for 72%, C for 64%, and D for 50%.

      % of grade  
  Three in-class exams:     20% x 2  
  Final exam:     30%  
  Maple lab assignments:     15%  
  Homework:     15%  

Only your highest two midterm exam grades will be counted. Also, the above does not include the precalculus exam the week of September 3. This exam will be counted 10% or 0% of your total, whichever makes your grade turn out higher.

Make-up policy :

If you have a legitimate conflict with any of the exams it is your responsibility to inform me at least a week before the exam. Otherwise, makeups will only be given in case of emergency. Late homework will generally not be accepted, but please ask your TA if you have special circumstances.

Calculators :

Calculators will not be allowed for the exams. You may use them on the homework if you want, but this is discouraged, as the purpose of the homework is to prepare you for the exams.

Supplemental instruction :

Corey Harmon runs the supplemental instruction sessions. This is a valuable resource and you are strongly encouraged to take advantage of it. Please go to ask questions and meet other students. It is a particularly good place to work on your homework.

There is also free drop-in tutoring as well as free one-one-one peer tutoring, available through the Student Success Center. Please see here for more information.

Schedule of lectures, homeworks, and exams

Homeworks are not always due on the same days of the week. This could be a bit annoying (my apologies), but it was done to make sure no one homework is excessively long.

Homeworks are slightly subject to change. No new problems will be added within a due date (and new problems are unlikely to be added at all).