AP Calculus

Advanced Placement Calculus

Description:

This AP Calculus course was created by a collaboration of experienced math teachers at the high school level, with lots of combined AP experience. The resulting product is an engaging, interactive, and student-friendly course, which suits all learning styles in each and every lesson, with auditory, visual, and hands-on components throughout.Each lesson involves an interactive flash video that allows students to participate at their own speed in the course, with the ability to pause and play at any point. Many lessons include dynamic graphs and other interactive applets that help the students understand the material in an engaging manner. Each video is accompanied by a student-friendly note package that allows the students to take notes on the videos to whatever level of detail they’d like. There are tons of practice questions provided for the student online, which means that there are no required textbooks for the course. Furthermore, there are full, detailed solutions for every single practice question, so the student will never get stuck. This means that students can learn how to solve even the most difficult problems in this course.Course Content:
This course covers the regular high school Calculus course, plus additional AP topics. (All topics covered are as follows: Functions, Limits and Continuity, The Derivative, Exponential Functions, Logarithmic Functions, and Inverse Trigonometric Functions, The Derivative in Graphing and Applications, Integration, and Applications of the Definite Integral in Geometry, Science, and Engineering)

Assessments and Marks:
Marks are earned in a variety of ways, with all assessments designed to be very fair, and entirely in line with the lessons and practice questions. In other words, there are zero surprises when it comes to the tests and quizzes, or even the final exam for that matter. The student will know exactly what they can expect, and are given lots of practice beforehand, including practice tests for each chapter as well as the final exam, with full, detailed solutions for each. Furthermore, special attention will be given to preparing students specifically for the AP Calculus Exam. However, it is NOT necessary for students to write the AP exam in May to obtain the full, EIGHT (8) credits*, for this course. The AP Exam is written purely by choice and is necessary for University credit, not high school credit. Your mark in this course is unaffected if you choose not to write the exam. (*See below under Credits)

Resources:
The only required resource is that students purchase a TI-83 or 84 Graphing Calculator, which is necessary for the course.

Credits:
Students can receive EIGHT (8) Grade 12-level credits for this course: 4 Credits for “AP Calculus AB” and 4 Credits for “Calculus 12.” The Calculus 12 content is entirely covered by the AP Calculus content. Hence, upon having completed AP Calculus you will actually have completed Calculus 12 too! And hence, 4 extra credits are available to you!

Student Feedback
On the Video Lessons:

  • “The videos are very helpful. It’s nice that i can rewatch the parts i don’t understand. Really helps out alot.” – Patterson T.
  • “I really love those videos…!” – Erica C.

On the AP Exam:

  • “Apparently this course prepared me well because I was able to get a 5/5 on the College Board Exam…” – Nick B.

Appendix: Why take Calculus in high school?

  • Estimates for the failure / drop-out rate for first year calculus at university are historically between 35-50%. (According to one student, it was 75% for SFU in a recent year.)
  • “Students with a high school calculus course continue to do much better than students who had not taken a high school calculus course. In fact, the gap between these groups of students has widened significantly.” Quote from UBC. (In fact, their passing rate is way higher than the other group, and their grades are approximately 20% higher.)
  • Students who take calculus in high school end up GREATLY boosting their GPA at university by taking calculus there again. And these days, anything that boosts your overall university GPA is so important because of the fierce competition.
  • Possible reasons for the much higher marks / passing rate:
    • The teacher support is way higher. At many universities, you may not even get time with your actual professor, and you are often simply a number.
    • The pace at high school is much more manageable… and the online school can provide that even more if desired.
    • Universities are often trying to weed out poorer students and make it very difficult to get 100%, so their tests can be tricky and not reflective of the assignments or even notes they gave in class. But in high school, the notes, assignments, quizzes and tests are all designed to be quite consistent and fair.
  • Past students: Students who take calculus at high school so often come back and tell me how well they did at university and how glad they were that they took it in high school first.