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Math Help - What do I need to KNOW to begin precal?

  1. #1
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    What do I need to KNOW to begin precal?

    As the topic states what do I specifically need to know before beginning precal?

    e.g factoring quadratic polynomials

    The reason I asked is that I am nearing completing for a book on algebra I and about half of II, a self teaching guide, and I would like to sign up for precal if this is sufficient enough background.

    Thank you
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  2. #2
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    A basic skim of topics to have a firm grasp on before you start pre-calc would be;

    Geometry;
    -Points and Lines
    -Similar Triangles
    -Pythagoras' Theorem
    -Perimeters, areas, and volumes of geometric figures.

    Algebra;
    -The Real Line
    -Elementary arithmetic
    -Arithmetic between algebraic expresssions.
    -Factoring
    -Distributive law, factoring polynomials.
    -Completing the square
    -Quadratic Formula
    -Exponents
    -Radicals and Rationalization

    Trigonometry;
    -Radian measure
    -Trigonometric functions and inverse trig functions
    -Graphs of trig functions
    -Common values between trig functions
    -Trig Identities
    -Sine and Cosine laws.

    Also, I would strongly recommend you are very very comfortable with function notation.

    For a more comprehensive list, and even review, I'd recommend checking out http://media.wiley.com/product_data/...0764539841.pdf, if you can work through that, I'd say you are ready.
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  3. #3
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    Thank you sir!
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  4. #4
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    Just a followup I was able to work my way through the vast majority of the examples given flawlessly. I would like to note that I did not see much about geometry within the review, perhaps I missed it.
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  5. #5
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    I added that in because you will use those concepts plenty for related rates and optimization problems.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kasper View Post
    I added that in because you will use those concepts plenty for related rates and optimization problems.
    Perhaps it would be wise to purchase a self teaching guide for geometry if I have not used the subject in awhile.
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  7. #7
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    Yes, a self-teaching guide in geometry would be a good idea. For many high school students today in the US the math sequence is alg 1 - geometry - alg 2 - precalc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kasper View Post
    A basic skim of topics to have a firm grasp on before you start pre-calc would be;

    Geometry;
    -Points and Lines
    -Similar Triangles
    -Pythagoras' Theorem
    -Perimeters, areas, and volumes of geometric figures.

    Algebra;
    -The Real Line
    -Elementary arithmetic
    -Arithmetic between algebraic expresssions.
    -Factoring
    -Distributive law, factoring polynomials.
    -Completing the square
    -Quadratic Formula
    -Exponents
    -Radicals and Rationalization

    Trigonometry;
    -Radian measure
    -Trigonometric functions and inverse trig functions
    -Graphs of trig functions
    -Common values between trig functions
    -Trig Identities
    -Sine and Cosine laws.
    Knowledge of trig beforehand isn't required. Many precalc courses include trig. To me precalc = college algebra + trigonometry + analytic geometry + (a bit of) discrete math.


    01
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  8. #8
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    My pre-calc included a small few-page review of grade 12 trig, but nothing else before assuming you know it backwards and forwards, differences in the curriculems I suppose.

    At the very least, if you know that going into it, you'll be golden.
    Last edited by Kasper; July 9th 2009 at 05:00 PM.
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