B Bruce Bare
Q SCI 190
Covers applications of precalculus techniques and concepts to environmental, ecological, biological, and natural resource problems stressing the formulation, solution, and interpretation of mathematical procedures. Prerequisite: minimum grade of 2.0 in MATH 098 or MATH 103, a score of 151-169 on the MPT-GS test, or a score of 145-163 on the MPT-AS test. Offered: AWSp.
Teaches students how to use mathematical techniques to better understand the behavior of the natural world. The logical development of many mathematical topics is explored to enable students to prepare for a course in calculus. The emphasis is on the development of basic skills with applications to environmental, biological, and natural resource problems.
Student learning goals
To master the concepts of elementary mathematical techniques useful to study calculus.
To understand how to use mathematical techniques to better understand and gain insight into the functioning of biological and environmental systems.
To demonstrate the proper uses of mathematical thinking and the role mathematics plays in the scientific and the common press.
To allow students to better understand how mathematics can be properly used in their disciplinary studies in biology, natural resource sciences, environmental sciences, and other physical and social sciences.
General method of instruction
The course is delivered using a hybrid approach, but there are no formal lectures.
The web is used to deliver all course content. Students are responsible for accessing this information and for learning the course material. This requires self-discipline and vigilance to ensure that enough study time is devoted to this course on a daily basis. The instructors use email to communicate with the class and a chat room is available for students to submit questions or comments. In addition, our course TA holds office hours to provide individual attention when needed. To keep students on pace, a self-graded homework assignment is assigned weekly and consists of 18-30 problems from the text. Homework assignment due dates are shown on the class web site as well as on the homework web page. For full details about this course -- including the text, grading, online course materials available through CourseCompass, and other information -- visit the web site shown at the bottom of this page.
Please review the course and/or test prerequisites shown above. In addition, an ability to think in abstract terms using a logical thought process is a requirement for any mathematics course. Students are expected to spend 3 hours outside of class for each credit earned. This time is to be spent working problems, reading the text, utilizing the videos available on the web, and thinking about the concepts being used.
Class assignments and grading
Most of the self-graded homework problems involve short word problems that must be formulated and answered in numerical terms. Answers to the homework assignments and a variety of quizzes and practice exams are available online through CourseCompass. A Multimedia Library is also available through CourseCompass - it contains powerpoint slides from each chapter, videos, quiz and test problems, and an online text.
Homeworks are not graded. Five hourly (55 minutes) examinations, with one allowed drop, plus a comprehensive final examination (110 minutes). All examinations are closed book, but a hand held calculator, the algebra review card available on CourseCompass, and one page of notes you prepare. Seventy-two percent of the course grade is based on the four highest hourly examinations, with the final examination constituting the remaining 28%. No curve is used. Instead a fixed grading scheme is employed and is based on the total number of points possible on the items listed and weighted as above. The actual GPA closely follows the following distribution where total weighted points are followed in () by the GPA: 100 (4.0); 95 (3.9); 90 (3.7); 85 (3.4); 80 (3.1); 75 (2.8); 70 (2.4); 65 (1.9); 60 (1.4); 55 (0.8); 50 (0.2); 45 (0.0). For more details see the description of grading procedures on the web site shown below. Exams may be taken at a remote site with instructor approval and if arrangements are made in advance.