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Highest-level math course

sqdwfe13sqdwfe13 Posts: 1,261Registered User Member
edited April 2009 in College Admissions
Would it hurt me a lot at selective colleges if the highest-level math course I took was Precalculus before I graduated?
Post edited by sqdwfe13 on
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Replies to: Highest-level math course

  • ModulationModulation Posts: 1,877Registered User Senior Member
    It can be... Most expect four years, and I think precalc is like three years.
  • Secret Asian ManSecret Asian Man Posts: 2,497Registered User Senior Member
    Most do like to see (and some even require) at least one year of calculus. Others only wish to see four years. Depends on the school.

    It certainly won't help.
  • skateboarderskateboarder Posts: 541Registered User Member
    just take AP stat, its a joke of a class. i love it.
  • light10491light10491 Posts: 1,174Registered User Senior Member
    my friend skipped pre calc this year and took ap calc bc in her junior year, whereas most people take it in their senior year

    and to graduate u have to have 4 years of math, and she already maxed out all the math available seeing ap calc bc is the highest level

    so she applied to ap stats to fulfill the requirement

    and results came out thursday as who got in, or was waitlisted for ap stats

    and i was like uhh jinzhao it says here u are waitlisted

    and she was like WAHTTTTTT HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE (SPASM)

    then i was like jk

    ok that was random lol
  • sqdwfe13sqdwfe13 Posts: 1,261Registered User Member
    Ok, but what if I took 4 years of math including: Honors Geometry, Honors Algebra 2, Honors Precalculus, and AP Statistics? I'm doubling up on Honors Precalc and AP Statistics.

    It's going to be reeeally hard for me to fit in AP Calc BC because I'd have to sacrifice a lot of other things I am doing.

    But if I was well-rounded in every other way, would a selective college actually REJECT me for not taking Calculus?
  • Secret Asian ManSecret Asian Man Posts: 2,497Registered User Senior Member
    Probably not (for some colleges it is a requirement though). What that set of math classes tells colleges is that math may not be your strongest area. So then SAT I/II scores come into play, i.e. if you did well you should be okay.
  • sqdwfe13sqdwfe13 Posts: 1,261Registered User Member
    Ouch, I most definitely don't want to send off that message to colleges considering I want to major in Econ. I didn't know Calculus was a requirement at some colleges. Would you mind telling me the names of some colleges that require it?
  • PPham27PPham27 Posts: 154Registered User Junior Member
    I doubt it's required anywhere since some schools simply don't offer it. However, if your school offers calculus and you didn't take it, it's going to look like you're a slacker and aren't challenging yourself especially to schools like MIT.

    That said Econ is becoming an increasingly quantitative field. Hopefully, other parts of your application convey some strength in mathematics.
  • breakfastbreakfast Posts: 91Registered User Junior Member
    I never took calc. Depends on the schools you're planning on applying to, but it didn't hurt me. Just check the requirements at schools you plan to apply to. :)

    I took (just fyi): Geometry, Algebra 2, Functions/Trig/Statistics, and AP Statistics.

    The first three classes were all basically "easy" math classes - but I just don't understand math well, so I didn't see the point in struggling (and probably getting Cs no matter how hard I worked) in a different track. AP Stat is a challenge for me but I'm doing well. It makes a lot more sense to me than other math classes have. :)
  • StevenSeagalStevenSeagal Posts: 1,437- Member
    I did COLLEGE NOW (equivalent of Honors, but I also get college credit at the local CC) Precalc the first semester senior year and now I'm in COLLEGE NOW Trig. I've been accepted to Seattle University ($7500 scholarship), Emory's Oxford College, Stony Brook University (OOS) ($3000 grant), Robert Morris University ($8000 a year), Loyola University Chicago, and Fordham University. All of them are great schools, but I'm not sure how selective of schools you're looking at.
  • ReachForDreamsReachForDreams Posts: 391Registered User Member
    "Most expect four years, and I think precalc is like three years."

    At our school precalc is the fourth year:
    Algebra 1
    Geometry
    Algebra 2
    Precalc



    "and she already maxed out all the math available seeing ap calc bc is the highest level"

    Is this common at most schools? At our school you can go to multivariable calc as the highest level. Plus we have to take Algebra AB to take Algebra BC, except for special circumstances.
  • ReachForDreamsReachForDreams Posts: 391Registered User Member
    "It's going to be reeeally hard for me to fit in AP Calc BC because I'd have to sacrifice a lot of other things I am doing."

    Like others have said, including GCs I've talked to, taking Calc in high school is pretty important. Schools do frown upon not taking it, and yes it could hurt you.

    I'm not trying to scare you or upset you but give you the honnest truth. Mostly it depends on the type of schools that you are applying to. Most of the schools that "stereotypical" CCers apply to think it is important.

    Good luck with everything.
  • shravasshravas Posts: 2,023Registered User Senior Member
    It should depend on your school, and how easy it is for you to move accelerate. In my school district, whether or not you are able to take Calculus your senior year of high school is mostly dependent on a test that you take in 6th grade, and there isn't really any way to go higher, unless you take summer classes or something are really able to get the school to give you credit for that. And I would hope that colleges don't really care about how you do in 6th grade.
  • RixsRixs Posts: 1,003Registered User Member
    Colleges can't just look at your classes without looking at your school too. I'm finishing Pre-Calc this year, and it will be my last year of required maths for Advanced Diploma (4 total).

    There is Calc AB in my school (as of next year). However, it will only be offered as AP Calc AB online, and I don't believe a single student has signed up to take it next year, not even the few students who like math.

    Personally, I don't believe colleges will discount me because I chose not to take an AP online course for Calculus. Most of the seniors who've applied to college this year (most of which are in Pre-Calc now or who took it last year and no math this year...because there was none above PreCalc this year) have been accepted to most of the places they applied to.

    I don't think the colleges that I'll apply to next year will toss my app because I didn't take Calculus. Then again, I don't know about the Top school because I'm not a future Ivy applicant and such.

    I actually have a full course-load next year (6 classes, because DE classes are two periods). I don't believe colleges will think I'm slacking off at all.

    Maybe it depends on the college? Probably. Some won't care as long as you've completed your requirements and have good grades and rank and GPA. Some are pickier.
  • tokenadulttokenadult Posts: 17,473Super Moderator Senior Member
    See the table "calculus before grade 12" here

    David Bressoud's Launchings from the CUPM Curriculum Guide

    for the number of students who have taken more advanced math courses. Different colleges look for different student characteristics, but it's not a bad idea to challenge yourself in math.
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