Do I Need Calculus?

<p>I just finished my freshman year at a strong California public school and I'm questioning my decision to take algebra 1 instead of geometry because I will only be able to go up to precalculus. The rest of my classes are the hardest available (for my age) and I have a perfect GPA. Most likely I will be applying to top UC's and I also like UPenn, UChicago, and Stanford. My only question is whether I should find a way to take calculus and if so; are there any routes that you would recommend where I could take precalculus outside of school.</p>

<p>I'm not aksing for my chances just recommendations on whether to take calculus.</p>

<p>Thank You</p>

<p>It will really hurt you to not take calculus. You can take precalculus online.</p>

<p>My DS had the same situation. He doubled up on math classes Sophomore year so he could take Calc</p>

<p>Thanks for the replies. Any specific websites???</p>

<p>Try to take Calculus. I'm taking AP Cal next year and I'm kind of nervous :P. What I did was when I had the opportunity to skip ahead (counselor adviced) I did so! Or else I'd be in the same situation as you. Skip to the next level if you can or take precal over the summer.</p>

<p>I would probably be capable of skipping ahead, but I doubt my school would allow it (large Cali public school). I'm more likely to go the summer route, but that might not even be available because of budget cuts. Thanks for helping a freshman out!</p>

<p>There are some online classes that are cheaper than others. Just got to find the right ones. Some can range from low $100-$400</p>

<p>But honestly, that wouldn't be too fun. I'm taking World Religions and/or Laws & Ethics this summer so I can take AP Physics and still take all the classes I want. I'm not too excited lol</p>

<p>Haha I'm just beginning to learn that this whole getting into college thing isn't really supposed to be all that fun.</p>

<p>I think it is. It's very competitive and I love winning. So this is like a game to me, then once I get accepted it's all boring.. Lol</p>

<p>No, it will not hurt you at the colleges you listed, especially since the decision of whether or not you could take calculus probably occurred in 6th or 7th grade. The only top college where it will hurt you to not to take calculus is CalTech since they only offer proof-based calculus and you probably will not do well in that class without any calculus background.</p>

<p>You should still probably try to find a way to take it though, especially since if you need it in college, your calculus class will probably contain many people who've seen the material before. So if that class grades on a curve, you'll be at a disadvantage.</p>

<p>I might be considering some type of business major. Some b schools prefer a completion of high school calculus. In your opinions is that a must-have or an important suggestion?</p>

<p>AP Calculus class is pretty important for top colleges, no matter what your intended major might be. As other said, with so many students taking AP Calc, you will definitely be at somewhat of a disadvantage. Will your school allow you to double in math, by any chance? If you could do Geometry/Algebra II at the same time, that would work because they really aren't related - it's not as though you need Geometry to do Algebra II; they're just different.</p>

<p>Just don't do College Algebra and Precal at the same time. It's a waste since College Algebra is everything you learn in Precal lol</p>

<p>I could try to double up, but I do play sports so it could be a challenge, as far as scheduling goes. I will definitely look into it, though.</p>

<p>I think Wharton requires or "highly recommends" students take a year of calculus when applying.</p>

<p>Nah. I got a C+ first semester of BC and wondered for two months if I was going to get a warning letter from Yale. </p>

<p>I never would have taken it if I knew how much I'd hate it.</p>

<p>I know at my school that you can take Geometry and Algebra II at the same time. I wouldn't think that track would be too difficult if you are good at math. I also know some kids who have taken precalculus over the summer, but I would advocate taking Geometry and Algebra II at the same time and doing cooler things over the summer.</p>

<p>Off topic, Caltech's website says they require calculus actually.</p>

<p>Hi... parent of a kid that took as much math as he could (AP Calc AB, AP Calc BC, and AP Stats). You need to take Calc AB to put yourself in a competitive position for the top universities. Even with Calc AB, there is no guarantee but it certainly puts you in a better position. Good luck.</p>

<p>^Cal AB, YEAH! Who needs BC? Pshhh</p>