Knowledge of pre-calculus is a vital skill that students would have before moving on to calculus and other forms of advanced mathematics. The ideas learned are necessary for careers in finance mathematics, engineering, the hard sciences, and some design fields. Pre-calculus can be tough for many learners, but there are techniques to go about learning it that may help.
To learn it, a student may find a workbook, although it may be optional.
- Read books on algebra I and II. Solve exercise problems and make sure you have a solid background and knowledge of the subject. Pre-calculus builds its concept from what you have learned in algebra. Do not study pre-calculus without first making sure that algebra is learned by heart. Strengthen your work by reviewing all the aspects of algebra; all the formulas could be solved easily and all the unknowns discovered.
- Take a class. Pre-calculus is not easily learned on one's own. You need to study thoroughly, but it helps to have your classmates to interact with. If you have taken pre-calculus a long time ago and you think you are ready for a calculus class, don’t push it. You need to have a refresher class. You need to have the skill before announcing that you know pre-calculus.
- Study with a tutor. A tutor offers one-on-one teaching. If you are enrolled in a university pre-calculus class, ask your teacher to recommend a tutor for you. A graduate student who is good in calculus can also be a tutor for pre-calculus.
- Solve practice problems. If you solve problems everyday, your skills will be reinforced. The concepts you are learning will be inculcated in your mind. Each problem you are solving will give a different category of skills. Become used to working on practice problems at least half an hour everyday. This method would have your learning skills stuck in your mind. Working different kinds of problems will hone your skills in problem solving and will give you readiness to take a calculus course.
- Browse the Internet for practice problems. Confirm your knowledge by checking the solution that accompanies the practice problem. Practice at least an hour a day every day and be comfortable with every kind of problem.
- Solve problems first, and then verify the answer. If you made mistakes, re-solve the problem to see where you went wrong. Then work on another similar problem until you become comfortable solving the same solution. Then go to the next problem after solving and correcting the current one. Practice solving problems daily so you will not forget the concepts and processes.
Learning pre-calculus can be as demanding as calculus itself. For a student who wants a college degree, a solid knowledge of pre-calculus could help in its attainment. It cannot be denied that learning this subject facilitates the learning of other subjects. College studies for any course require attitudes, habits and skills to be ready for the life you will lead tomorrow. Study skills and homework preparation are part of a student’s agenda for success.