Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community polls, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

Software Engineering - Math Courses

kks87xkks87x Posts: 18Registered User New Member
edited July 2011 in Engineering Majors
I will be starting at Auburn University this Fall with Software Engineering as my major. I just received my AP scores, however, and I did much better in Calculus than I expected, a 5. I understood all of the Cal I & II concepts in class, except for Taylor and McLaurin series. I can do the problems, but it feels formulaic and I don't feel like I grasped the concepts well in that section. Because of that, I decided to retake Cal II my first semester. However, having received a 5 on the AP exam, I am wondering if I should still re-take Cal II or continue to Cal III?

tl;dr Basically, does Software Engineering (or later, higher math in general) require a good basis and understanding in Geometric/Infinite/Taylor series or will I be able to get by without re-taking the course?
Post edited by kks87x on

Replies to: Software Engineering - Math Courses

  • broken_symlinkbroken_symlink Posts: 690Registered User Member
    take calc iii.
  • kks87xkks87x Posts: 18Registered User New Member
    So much detail. Mind if I inquire as to why?
  • aegrisomniaaegrisomnia Posts: 1,026Registered User Senior Member
    An understanding of series and sequences is going to be integral to passing any decent "Introduction to Algorithms" course. Taylor and Maclaurin series aren't so useful, per se, but you should have a fairly good handle on the basics of series (convergence, limits, sequences, comparison tests, etc.). This is required to do time-complexity analysis.

    In other words, Cal II is infinitely more useful and important than Cal III for the study of CS/SwE, and if you are shaky, retake it.
  • aegrisomniaaegrisomnia Posts: 1,026Registered User Senior Member
    Also, if you ever take any numerical analysis courses, Taylor and Maclaurin series become vitally important.
  • GLOBALTRAVELERGLOBALTRAVELER Posts: 2,856Registered User Senior Member
    So much detail. Mind if I inquire as to why?

    There are other higher math courses that would apply to computer science/software engineering like junior/senior-level courses in combinatorics or graph theory. At the University of Maryland, Calculus III is a prerequisite for this course.

    Also, if you ever do any scientific programming/software development, not only will you need Calculus III but also Differential Equations.

    Another area is cryptology which will have either number theory or abstract algebra as prerequisites.

    Do not take my following statement as "cut and dry" but the amount of math you know will "kind of" determine if you work in the hard-core software engineering OR the more IT/IS-type of software engineering.
  • aegrisomniaaegrisomnia Posts: 1,026Registered User Senior Member
    ^ I think the question is more about whether to start in Cal II or Cal III. I agree he should take as much math as possible.
  • GLOBALTRAVELERGLOBALTRAVELER Posts: 2,856Registered User Senior Member
    ^ I think the question is more about whether to start in Cal II or Cal III. I agree he should take as much math as possible.

    I stand corrected about the original question....

    Personally, I would make SURE I had Calculus II down pat.
  • jwxiejwxie Posts: 1,479Registered User Senior Member
    If you doubt your ability, retake Calculus II. You are at least one course ahead of the many people with 5 on AP BC (you mean BC, not AB, right?).
    Double check with the math department and see if there's a placement test.

    Also, ask for old final exams for Calculus II and Calculus I. Should you decide to go ahead with Calculus III you should score at least 80% on the final exam.
    If Calculus II covers series, I think it is okay to go ahead to Calculus III. You can practice problems at home while taking Calculus III.
  • Orbit196Orbit196 Posts: 329Registered User Junior Member
    Please do yourself a favor and take calc 3. Don't take the weeder calc 2 class. When you need series again in the future, just learn it.
Sign In or Register to comment.