Calculus I

All students are required to take the Calculus Placement Exam prior to enrolling in MAT 1234 (Calculus I). This placement exam, which is administered online, covers pre-calculus algebra and trigonometry skills that are necessary for success in calculus.

Calculators are not permitted on the exam. Scores on the exam will be used to determine appropriate placement, typically in either Calculus I (MAT 1234) or Precalculus (MAT 1110).

Students currently enrolled at SPU who wish to register for MAT 1234 should email onlinelearning@spu.edu to take the placement exam. Before coming to campus for early registration, newly admitted students will receive information about taking the placement exam.

You may do some exercises to help you review some key ideas of algebra and trigonometry. Note that this review does not cover every type of problem that might be on the placement exam. It is also not intended as a sample of what the exam will look like. It is merely intended as a good starting point for reviewing your pre-calculus skills. Solutions for the practice exercises are also available. 

Course objectives for MAT 1234: Calculus I

This first course in calculus emphasizes limits and derivatives of functions of one variable. The primary aims of the course are to help you develop new problem-solving and critical-reasoning skills and to prepare you for further study in mathematics, the physical sciences, or engineering. By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  • Compute limits by graphical, numerical, and analytical methods.
  • Mechanically calculate derivatives of algebraic and trigonometric functions and combinations of functions.
  • Use derivatives to sketch graphs and solve applied problems.
  • Represent functions graphically, numerically, analytically, and verbally.
  • Interpret derivatives as rates of change.
  • Solve systems of linear equations.
  • Perform matrix arithmetic.
  • Use Maple effectively to explore and solve calculus problems.
  • Analyze and solve complex problems.
  • Provide clear written explanations of the ideas behind key concepts from the course.

You should also gain an increased appreciation of mathematics as part of the language of science and as a study in itself.

Nicole Rodriguez

Nicole Rodriguez

Dr. Hossler makes math fun and cares for each of his students on a personal level. While he encourages me in my pursuit of math, he also encourages me to become an educator through his teaching methods.

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