Fall 2017


Optional Text --- Calculus Early Transcendentals

 Stewart  (Eighth Edition)

ISBN 978-1-285-74155-0


PREREQUISITES: Calculus I is the first in a three course sequence that develops the fundamental concepts of the real number calculus.  This course requires successful completion of Math 1730 (Precalculus) or its equivalent.  If you have taken precalculus but earned a C-, you should strongly consider retaking that course before taking Calculus I.

You will need a graphing calculator (preferably TI-83 or TI-84).  You may not use graphing calculators with symbolic manipulation software (DERIVE, MAPLE, etc.) on exams.  I will provide all needed course materials on my webpage (  You are expected to bring to class a printed copy of each day's investigation. 

PURPOSE: Calculus I provides an introduction to single variable calculus.  In particular, in this course you will

We will be using graphing calculators extensively in class.  If you encounter differences or difficulties, the following links might prove helpful.

TI Instruction Manuals:

TI 84 Tutorial:

TI-83 and TI-84 Tutorial:

From a broader perspective, you will also learn key thinking skills that will prepare you for the special difficulties presented by calculus problems.  In particular, you will practice

OBJECTIVES: Upon completion of this course, students will have developed an understanding of: 
1. limits and how to compute them; 
2. the derivative as a limiting process; 
3. the importance of the derivative function in determining properties of the function it comes from;  
4. the methods used for creating graphs of the derivative function from the graph of a function; 
5. the methods used for computing the derivative formula for a function given the formula for the function; 
6. applications of the derivative;
7. the definite integral; 
8. antiderivatives for a function and their relationship to the definite integral;  
9. some methods for computing definite integrals given the formula for the function; 

REQUIREMENTS: In general, you are expected to 
1. attend class and participate in discussions; 
2. read and study class assignments and solve assigned problems; 
3. ask questions in class when you are unsure of any concept or unclear on any assigned problem; 
4. attend the help lab or come to my office for additional assistance as necessary; 
5. take all announced quizzes and exams (including the final) on the day they are scheduled
6. come to class prepared.  This includes completing homework in a timely manner, bringing your course materials, and bringing your calculator. 

I have primary responsibility for control over the classroom learning environment and can direct the temporary removal or exclusion from the classroom of any student engaged in disruptive conduct or conduct which otherwise violates the general rules and regulations of the institution.  Depending on the severity or frequency of the incident(s), I may report such misconduct to the assistant dean for Judicial Affairs for implementation of such disciplinary sanctions as may be appropriate.

GRADING: We will cover the  majority of Investigations 1 - 28 provided on my webpage.  Most investigations come with a short homework assignment.  You are expected to work every problem in each homework assignment.  For your convenience, an answer key is provided for each assignment.   Grading is done on a standard scale : 90-100 -- A, 80-89.5 -- B, etc.  Individual activities are not curved; however, there will be a curve at the end of the course.  For the most part, I gather enough summative data on you to be confident your numeric score accurately reflects your class performance; however, rare exceptions do occur.  For these exceptions, I reserve the right to assign  a grade of A-, B+/-,  C+/- , or D+/-.  A grade of A- or B+ might be assigned to scores between 89.0 and 91.0; likewise a grade of B- or C+ might be assigned to scores between 79.0 and 81.0, and a C- or D+ might be assigned to scores between 69.0 and 71.0. Assigning these grades is a rare occurrence and depends on exceptional individual circumstances.  There is no guarantee you will receive this grade if your score falls in one of these ranges.

  1. In-class testing:  There will be a minimum of four in-class exams.  All  exams are closed-book, last the entire class period, and are worth 100 points each.   Exams will count 60% of your final grade.
  2. Final exam:  There will be a comprehensive in-class final exam given on the specified final exam date.  This exam will count 15% of your final grade.
  3. Quizzes:  There will be a very brief homework quiz after most investigations.  These quizzes will consist of one problem taken from the homework assignment (or very similar to a problem in the assignment).  You will be given about five minutes to work the problem (you are expected to have worked all of the homework problems prior to the quiz).    Homework quizzes will be administered one or two days after class completion of an investigation and will count  15% of your final grade.
  4. Algebra Review:  Algebra skills are crucial to this course.  You will be given a short algebra readiness test at the beginning of the semester.  If you score 80% or better on the exam, you are done with the algebra review.  However, if you score below 80%, you will be required to complete the eight-unit algebra review posted on my webpage and then retake the exam.  You must complete the review no later than Week 7 of the semester; if you do not, then you will not be able to retake the exam.  To help you move through the review, there is a mandatory quiz at the end of each unit.  A student assistant will be available outside of class twice  a week to assist you as work through the review, and algebra manipulation will be kept to a minimum in class until midterm.  This assistant will administer the quizzes when you are ready to take them.  At midterm, the assistant will administer a second algebra skills exam; your score on this exam will replace the score from the first exam.  There will be a two-week window for you to retake the exam; you may take the second exam only after you at score least 75% on each unit quiz.  You may take a version of each unit quiz more than once.  (If you scored above 80% on the first exam, you can opt to work through the review and retake the exam as well.)  

Your end-of-semester grade will be computed according to the following formula

                                                                                                           FINAL GRADE = 0.6(E / e)  + 0.15(F / f) + 0.25(Q / q)  



If you are not able to take a quiz or exam at the scheduled time, you must schedule a makeup time.  Except for medical or family emergencies, the scheduled makeup time cannot be more than two weekdays after the quiz or exam.  If you don't follow this procedure, you will not be able to make up the graded activity. 

If you are diagnosed with, or suspect you have the flu... DO NOT COME TO CLASS.

I usually return an exam or quiz no more than two class days after it is given.  It is your responsibility to monitor your progress in the course.  I strongly recommend you actively ask questions in class or come to my office regularly to discuss your progress.  I will be happy to suggest strategies for helping you succeed, but no strategy provides a quick-fix. You will receive a detailed breakdown of your grade around mid term.  Do not wait until the last few weeks of class to try improving your grade. 

I will be taking attendance on most days.  More than four unexcused absences will automatically lower your end-of-semester grade by one letter.


IMPORTANT:  It is Department policy not to grant withdrawals after the withdrawal deadline has passed, unless circumstances have arisen which make it impossible for you to complete the course.  Late withdrawals must be approved by the Department Chair and often require documentation for the extenuating circumstances.

No one will be exempt from the final.

LOTTERY STATEMENT:  To retain the Tennessee Education Lottery Scholarship eligibility, you must earn a cumulative TELS GPA of 2.75 after 24 and 48 attempted hours and a cumulative TELS GPA of 3.0 thereafter.  A grade of C, D, F, FA, or I in this class may negatively impact TELS eligibility. If you drop this class, withdraw, or if you stop attending this class you may lose eligibility for your lottery scholarship, and you will not be able to regain eligibility at a later time.  For additional Lottery rules, please refer to your Lottery Statement of Understanding form ( or contact your MT One Stop Enrollment Coordinator (

INCOMPLETES:  An incomplete will be given only in accordance with the University Policy.  If you have a disability that may require assistance or accommodation, or you have questions related to any accommodations  for testing, note takers, readers, etc., please speak with me as soon as possible. Students may also contact the  Office of Disabled Students Services (898-2783) with questions about such services.  

ACADEMIC MISCONDUCT:  Middle Tennessee State University takes a strong stance against academic misconduct.  Academic Misconduct includes, but is not limited to, plagiarism, cheating, and fabrication.  Plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, or facilitating any such act.  For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:

(1) Plagiarism:  The adoption or reproduction of ideas, words, statements, images, or works of another person as one’s own without proper attribution. This includes self-plagiarism, which occurs when an author submits material or research from a previous academic exercise to satisfy the requirements of another exercise and uses it without proper citation of its reuse.

(2) Cheating:  Using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, or study aids in any academic exercise.  This includes unapproved collaboration, which occurs when a student works with others on an academic exercise without the express permission of the professor.  The term academic exercise includes all forms of work submitted for credit or hours.

 (3) Fabrication:  Unauthorized falsification or invention of any information or citation in an academic exercise.

Going online and taking information without proper citations, copying parts of other student’s work, creating information for the purposes of making your paper seem more official, or anything involving taking someone else’s thoughts or ideas without proper attribution is academic misconduct.  If you work together on an assignment when it is not allowed, it is academic misconduct.  If you have a question about an assignment, please come see me to clarify.  Any cases of academic misconduct will be reported to the Office of Academic Affairs for violating the academic honesty requirements in the student handbook.  They will also result in failure for the course.  Remember – ignorance is NOT a defense.   

Students with Disabilities:  Middle Tennessee State University is committed to campus access in accordance with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Vocational Rehabilitation Act of 1973.  Any student interested in reasonable accommodations can consult the Disability & Access Center (DAC) website and/or contact the DAC for assistance at 615-898-2783 or

Title IX (Harrassment)If you believe you have been harrassed, disciminated against, or have been the victim of sexual assault, dating or domestic violence, or stalking, please contact a Title IX Deputy Coordinator at 615-898-2185 or 615-898-2750 or visit for resources.  As a faculty member, I am legally obligated to share reports of such incidents with the MTSU Title IX coordinator.

This syllabus is only a guide for your convenience; I reserve the right to make changes as class needs dictate.


Important dates:                                  

September 10 --- Last day to drop without a grade              November 1 --- Last day to drop with a "W"

October 14 - 17 --- Fall Break                                                 November 22 - 25 --- Thanksgiving Break

December 7 --- Study Day (No Classes)                              December 8 - 14 --- Finals Week

FINAL EXAM    ---    Wednesday December 13       3:00 - 5:00 PM

The final exam is comprehensive and multiple choice.  You will NOT need a Scantron sheet.


CLASS SCHEDULE (Subject to change as class needs dictate)  (Investigation handouts will be placed on my webpage.  Problem assignments can be found on the investigation handouts.  

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 1 (Defining Quantities)    

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 2 (Functions)    

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 3 (Limits)    

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 4 (Classifying Discontinuities)

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 5 (Linear Functions)  

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 6 (Average Rate of Change) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 7 (Applying Average Rate of Change) 


Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 8 (The Derivative) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 9 (Differentiability) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 10 (Local Linearity) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 11 (Mean Value Theorem) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 12 (Interpreting Derivatives) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 13 (The Second Derivative) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 14 (Sum and Constant Multiple Rules) 


Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 15 (Exponential Functions) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 16 (Sine and Cosine Functions) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 17 (The Product Rule) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 18 (The Quotient Rule) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 19 (Average Rate of Change for Composite Functions) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 20 (The Chain Rule) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 21 (Implicit Differentiation) 


Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 22 (Related Rates) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 23 (Optimization) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 24 (Antidifferentiation) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 25 (Substitution) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 26 (Net Area) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 27 (Riemann Sums) 

Pathways Through Calculus Investigation 28 (The Net Area Theorem)