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intend to self-study) (se lf.m ath )

subm itte d 6 m onths ago by buddyboys

myself over the summer and then take AP Calculus BC next

year. (I'm a sophomore in high school in precalculus/trig right

now.)

Thanks!

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will be taught in your AB class.

math

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135,971 mathematicians

~54 mathematicians online

focused on teaching you how to perform useful computations,

and Spivak is proof based, which means it is focused on teaching

Welcome to /r/math

you why and how these things actually work. If you haven't made

This subreddit is for discussion of mathematical

an effort to learn about proofs before it will go right over your

links and questions. Please read the FAQ

head.

before posting.

Unfortunately I'm not familiar with apostol although I've heard of Homework problems, practice problems, and

similar questions should be directed to

it before.

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it before.

I'd say stewart fits in with your plan best, overall, but that your

plan is kind of bad. If you are interested in advanced math, you

should learn some proof writing now as essentially all courses

more advanced than calculus are taught in a proof based style.

Good choices would be either "how to prove it" or "the book of

proof". Once you have that under your belt, there are all kinds of

subjects more advanced than calculus that actually don't require

any calculus that you will be able to self study. So this is the plan

with the most long term payoff.

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algebra is a good pickup. It is so useful even business majors

A Compilation of Free, Online Math Resources .

learn it.

Using LaTeX

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[] A lloran 4 points 6 m onths ago

following:

Spivak's is the best for learning math. Apostol's is the best

classical text.

TeXtheWorld Chrome extension

TeXtheWorld Greasemonkey userscript

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[; e^{\pi i} + 1 = 0 ;]

Post the equation above like this:

Probably the best answer here without denigrating any of the You may need to add four spaces before or put

backticks around math fragments.

three.

Sometimes, you're going to need to do a ridiculous

calculation. Stewart, while weak on theory, has plenty of

great exercises for tricky/involved computation.

x*`sup`* and x^(sup) both make xsup

sup

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parent

All three of them will be terrible for the goal of learning calc BC.

From an objective standpoint, Spivak and Apostol are at too high

of a level and Stewart is just a bad book all around.

Look for a different subject.

permalink

[] rhlewis Alge bra

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I disagree. Stewart is a very good book for Calc I-II. Very few

Tools

students have the maturity to read Spivak. Using Stewart will

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help them get the maturity.

/r/matlab

/r/sagemath

As for price, you can easily buy earlier editions for < $20.

(There is, of course, no essential difference between the sixth Related fields

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and seventh editions.)

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parent

I never suggested Spivak.

/r/algorithms

/r/compsci

/r/interdisciplinary

/r/statistics

a com m unity for 7 ye ars

No. Stewart's book is about rote memorization and

learning how to take a derivative without actually

understanding how to take a derivative.

It is an engineering book. No one who wants to "learn

math" should ever use it.

Have you ever taken a good look at a Calculus I-II book

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parent

It's easy to use it for better instruction than that.

are you just speaking from experience with

Stewart?

I've used at least a dozen calculus texts in my career.

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parent

use Stewart as a source of problems, not unlike a

Schaum's guide to calculus.

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about m ode ration te am

lectures, course notes, or even another textbook

to accompany the course. The intuition would

come from some of these alternate sources while

the homework/etc. comes from Stewart. That is

perfectly fine.

In the realm of self study, there is no set of

lectures, course notes or other textbooks that

come with Stewart.

Because Stewart should not be used for anything

other than repetitive practice problems, I do not

consider it to be a good mathematics textbook. It

is fine for the Calculus I, II, III courses which cater

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to engineers and physicists but from a pure

mathematical perspective, there are better

options.

This is why I put Stewart on the level of Schaum's

guides and why I think that someone looking to

learn mathematics (especially via self study) should

always use another source. Perhaps online lectures

+ Stewart but never just Stewart alone.

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parent

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parent

I'm sorry :/

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parent

I'm at university in the US. It's a big state school and I'm a math major now taking calc one. The

school uses Stewart. What text should I be using.

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parent

Stewart is pretty much the same as any other poorly written text on crank and grind calculus.

I don't mean to imply it's going to ruin your brain.

Since you are a math major, form a study group at your school for proof work and spivak

and you'll be in good shape. I can't recommend some random person tackle it on their own

but in a group it will be much more doable.

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parent

I prefer Apostol because he starts with integration. I think this is more natural, but it's the

book I used in high school so I'm a little biased. It also seems a lot closer in "style" to other

math textbooks.

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parent

I prefer Apostol because he starts with integration. I think this is more natural, but it's the book I

used in high school so I'm a little biased. To be clear it was the book we used in HS, but I happened

to use it for self-study. It also seems a lot closer in "style" to other math textbooks.

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parent

ok

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parent

If Stewart were bad, why did I need to pay $230 for it?

No, seriously, why am I supposed to pay $230 for a semester-long paperweight...

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parent

you paid $230 bucks for it because you weren't smart enough to avoid doing so.

I mean seriously, what the hell were you thinking.

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parent

Haha, it's worth noting I didn't actually buy it! I quoted the Amazon sticker price, but for the

actual class I torrented a .pdf of the book.

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parent

Did you beg people to sell it to you at that price? I'm amazed you even found someone selling it that

expensively.

Edit: Never mind, it apparently costs that much on Amazon. Seems slightly overpriced.

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parent

Haha it was required for my Calc classes, but I never actually bought a hard copy... I guess

enough people are willing to pay $230 that they'll keep that as the sticker price, though.

permalink

parent

if ap calc bc is high school level those books are way too advanced. Also a bitch to work through imo.

permalink

[] wintermute93 2 points 6 m onths ago

I see lots of posts saying that Stewart is the worst book ever written, and some posts saying that

Spivak/Apostol are too high-level for a first introduction to calculus. I agree with the latter, that seems clear.

I'm not sure I see where the Stewart hate is coming from. I learned calculus out of Stewart, and thought it

was fine. Admittedly, I've never taught calculus out of it, or really looked at it at all in the last 8 years so

or... What's so bad about it?

More importantly, not a single response so far actually suggests a good intro-level text. Briggs/Cochran and

Stewart are the ones I see being used everywhere. Is Briggs/Cochran any better, or is that bad too? What

would people actually recommend if they had to name an actual textbook (as opposed to self-guided study

via various free online sources)?

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[] docmedic 1 point 6 m onths ago*

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Use Stewart (or any similar thick calculus text, I like Edwards and Penney personally since it cuts a lot of the

fluff out). People here are not interested in the AP exam, but learning the theoretical side of math rather

than the practical side. You will be expected to know practical calculus in other classes (sciences, college

math courses, etc.), so it's not as useless of a skill people are making it out to be. You can also learn the

theory side of calculus later, of which is the standard math curriculum, whereas learning theoretical calculus

now and calculus problem solving later would be nonstandard.

Supplement Stewart with a book like Calculus by Frank Morgan, How to Ace Calculus the Streetwise Guide by

Adams, and/or an AP prep book since calculus bricks can get rather boring. The biggest challenge to selfstudy is pacing, so look online for some (from an accredited/respectable/legit university) professor's online

syllabus (pdf) using the same textbook as you, and try to follow that pacing or faster. Those professors

may have problem sets posted (about 5-10 per lesson) that come from the book, so do those. If you find

yourself not sure on the material, just do more problems from the same section until you do (it also helps

to try to do the example and proofs in the text, though proofs are more for understanding rather than for

material on the AP test).

Taking the AP exam is not a bad plan. It's what expected of you at most colleges (I come from a school with

a very strong, prestigious math program, and they drop you in multivariable calculus expecting you to be

able to do pages of integral calculations with ease; they don't expect you to know Spivak and will never

touch that book, since you'll gradually be introduced to theory in later math courses regardless). It also

puts you on an even playing field with other entering college students, both application wise and ability wise.

Extra: If you want a hint at the theory side of calculus, carefully read through the proofs in your calculus

text (Stewart, Larson, Edwards and Penney, whichever), to the point that you can recreate them, and look

at why they impose certain conditions and the limitations of their argument. Another easy supplementary

book that focuses on theory is Serge Lang's Calculus (at least it's easier than Spivak and Apostol). The

toughest part is just a logic/language barrier: the epsilon/delta definition of a limit sounds imposing and

seems to state something rather mundane in a roundabout way, but look closely at how careful and

rigorous the author is being, and think, if I were to be that precise in language, how would I define the same

idea? Once you understand that, and use that definition, then the other definitions/proofs won't be that

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hard.

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[] zN8 1 point 6 m onths ago

If you're just gonna take BC just use Khan Academy really, it won't be difficult assuming you have a

competent teacher.

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[] scottfarrar 2 points 6 m onths ago

Kjan academy will essentially be a less complete less accurate, and yet longer time investment version of

Stewart.

permalink

parent

I agree, I use Khan Academy extensively as is, but I also want to practice over the summer and keep my

skills up so I don't come back to school catatonic.

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parent

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