MT A120 College Algebra
This section of the course (Fall 2002) meets MWF 9-9:50AM in Ritter Hall 202.
The purpose of this course is to learn the elements of algebra and some applications which will be useful in your day-to-day lives. A key idea is the notion of a function; we will learn how to analyze functions using graphical methods, and will spend the majority of the course looking at interesting examples and their applications.
The course schedule link at the upper left of the page will take you to a page containing announcements of exams, homework assignments, and other date-sensitive material. It is a good page to bookmark and return to periodically.
There is also a very terse course description contained in the SLU Undergraduate Catalog (PDF format). The course prerequisite is a passing grade in MT A114 Intermediate Algebra or two years of high school algebra.
We will study the mathematics behind the image on this page later in the semester (Chapter 9, Conic Sections).
The required text for the course is College Algebra, 2nd edition by Michael Sullivan and Michael Sullivan, III. Students can buy the text from the SLU Bookstore.
Because we will be taking the graphical point-of-view mentioned above, you are required to have a graphing calculator for this course. We strongly recommend the TI-82 or TI-83 (the TI-81 is unfortunately not adequate). For students who haven't used these calculators in previous courses, there will be Graphing Calculator Workshops held early in the semester (times TBA). Optional equipment which you'll probably want: translucent colored slide cases so you look fashionable in class.
Homework and Exams
There will be some homework problems every week, unless otherwise indicated. You should periodically check the course schedule page for updates.
There will be three in-class exams given September 20th, October 14th, and November 8th; together these exams make up 50% of your final grade. The final exam is scheduled for Monday, December 16th from 8:00-9:50AM; it is comprehensive and is worth 35% of your final grade. Class participation (group work) accounts for the remaining 15%. Make-up exams will not be given. The College of Arts & Sciences has a policy concerning academic honesty with which you should be familiar.
- The Mathematics Department offers help sessions run by graduate students for all lower division courses. These begin around the second week of classes (Monday-Thursday 10AM-2PM, Friday 10AM-1PM in Ritter Hall Room 2). This is a great (and underutilized) resource for math students!
- Free tutoring is also available from Student Educational Services in the Academic Resources Center, Room 016, phone 977-3319.
- There is a helpful handout distributed by the Mathematics Department called Success in Mathematics which discusses study skills, problem solving techniques, studying for and taking exams.
- Most importantly, you should come to my office hours which are 10-11AM on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday in Ritter Hall 127.