Calculus I

Math 2412: Precalculus - Functions and Graphs

Fall 2017

Synonym: 18208, Section: 004, Northridge 4213
Monday / Wednesday 2:55 pm - 4:40 pm


General information about the prerequisite courses required for ACC calculus courses is found here.

Synonym: 35641, Section: 004, Northridge 4213
Monday / Wednesday 3:00 pm - 4:45 pm


Course Content:

Course Description: MATH 2412 Precalculus: Functions and Graphs (4-4-0). This is a course designed to prepare students for MATH 2413 Calculus I. Content includes algebraic, logarithmic, exponential, and trigonometric functions and equations; parametric equations; and the polar coordinate system.
Instructional Methodology: This course is taught in the classroom primarily as a lecture/discussion.
Course Rationale: This course is designed to teach students the algebraic and trigonometric modeling concepts needed for scientific/engineering calculus. It is not simply a review of college algebra and trigonometry.


Please make sure you have the necessary prerequisites for this course: MATH 1316 with a C or better or equivalent. Another option is an appropriate secondary school course (one semester of trigonometry or precalculus or the equivalent, including trigonometry) and a satisfactory entrance score on the ACC Mathematics Assessment Test.
Importance of Prerequisites: This is not a review course.  If you do not have current knowledge of the material in our MATH 1314 College Algebra, and MATH 1316, Trigonometry, please  ask your instructor about changing to one of these course to better prepare for MATH 2412.


You should bring your homework to class every day.  It will be collected regularly.  There may also be in-class assignments or quizzes collected for a grade (as part of your homework grade). There will be a penalty on late homework. Homework that is more than a week late might not receive any credit.  If you do not follow the instructions that will be announced in class about how to organize and submit your homework, you may not receive full (or any) credit for it.


Attendance is required in this course.  It is extremely important for you to attend class regularly.  I MAY drop you from the course for excessive absences, although I make no commitment to do so.

Keeping up:

Please, try to keep up with the homework and with the lecture in class. There just isn't much time to catch up. This means you have to be sure to allow yourself plenty of time to do the homework and to study.

Course Materials:

Textbook: Precalculus by James Abramson – This text is free through  You can access the book by navigating to, then choosing the Math subject, and choosing Precalculus. 

  • You may access the book on a tablet or a computer with internet access using the View Online option on the side. This works well and is fairly easy to use as long as you have an online connection.
  • You may also download and save a PDF of the text using the Download a PDF option. This works well on a computer or on a tablet if you open the PDF in iBooks (on an iOS device) or in a separate pdf reader (on a computer or Android or other mobile platforms). This may take a little while to download the first time (I suggest you download on a fast internet connection), but once it's downloaded, you don't need an online connection to access it later.
  • If you would like a hard copy of the book, simply use the Order a Print Copy option on the side. Choose Individual Order.  The printed book costs $58.00. It is a large book, so be prepared.

Technology:  As with any course where either graphing or scientific calculators are used, the calculator will be used as a supportive tool. This course is not about calculator usage, but about precalculus concepts.  We will use graphing calculators when their use enhances the understanding of a mathematical idea.  Graphing calculators are not required for this course. However, as you progress through the semester you may find it convenient to purchase your own. Individual instructors may vary in how often and in what manner they utilize these types of calculators. Cell phone calculators are prohibited on quizzes and exams. If you do not have a calculator with you, you may go to the library with your student ID and check one out for the day. You may be asked to use something like (available as a webpage or a downloadable app) for some in-class assignments.


There will be 3 exams plus a final exam (part of which will be comprehensive). Grades will be weighted as follows:


Tests 1, 2, 3




Final Exam







Sometime after Test 3, there will be a single make-up exam over the material on tests 1-3; the grade on this exam can be used to replace your lowest grade on the first three tests, up to a maximum grade of 80 if you make complete corrections for tests 1-3 or 70 without the completed corrections.
If you take any test late for any reason, there will be a penalty of 10 points off your test grade. However, no late tests will be allowed after I hand the graded tests back in class.  If you miss a test, you must try to take it during this “late” period.  If you do not take the test during that period, you will receive a 0 for that grade.  In that case, you will need to take the make-up exam to replace that 0. 
Grades will be assigned as follows:

A :

90% or better and a grade of at least 80% on the final

D :

60% - 69%

B :

80% - 89% and a grade of at least 70% on the final

F :

below 60%

C :

70% - 79% and a grade of at least 60% on the final




W :

Withdrawn by student or instructor prior to last withdrawal date on school calendar

I :

Incomplete grades (I) will be given only in very rare circumstances. Generally, to receive a grade of "I", a student must have taken all tests, be passing, and after the last date to withdraw, have a personal tragedy occur which prevents course completion. An incomplete grade cannot be carried beyond the established date in the following semester. The completion date is determined by the instructor but may not be later than the final deadline for withdrawal in the subsequent semester.


It is the student's responsibility to initiate all withdrawals in this course.  The instructor may withdraw students for excessive absences (4) but makes no commitment to do this for the student. After the last day to withdraw, neither the student nor the instructor may initiate a withdrawal. It is the responsibility of each student to ensure that his or her name is removed from the roll should he or she decide to withdraw from the class.  The instructor does, however, reserve the right to drop a student should he or she feel it is necessary. The student is also strongly encouraged to retain a copy of the withdrawal form for their records.
Students who enroll for the third or subsequent time in a course taken since Fall, 2002, may be charged a higher tuition rate, for that course. State law permits students to withdraw from no more than six courses during their entire undergraduate career at Texas public colleges or universities.  With certain exceptions, all course withdrawals automatically count towards this limit.  Details regarding this policy can be found in the ACC college catalog.
The withdrawal deadline for Fall 2017 is November 27, 2017.

Classroom behavior:

Classroom behavior should support and enhance learning. Behavior that disrupts the learning process will be dealt with appropriately, which may include having the student leave class for the rest of that day. In serious cases, disruptive behavior may lead to a student being withdrawn from the class. ACC's policy on student discipline can be found in the Student Handbook on the web at:

Class participation:

All students are expected to actively participate in this class. This can include asking relevant questions in class, participating in class discussions and other in-class activities, helping other students, coming to office hours with questions, and doing other things that contribute to the class.

Ask questions:

Please, please, please, if you don't understand something, or you aren't clear about something, or if you think I (or the book) have made a mistake (it has been known to happen), or if you have any other questions, please ask. Don't let confusion accumulate. If you don't want to ask in class, come to my office hours (or call) and ask. It is much easier to ask a question now than to miss it on the test.  Trust me, you will get much more out of the class if you become actively involved in it.

Always show your work:

It is much more important that you understand the processes involved in solving problems than that you just give me the right answer. If I see from your work that you understand what you are doing, I will usually give partial credit for a problem, even if you made a mistake somewhere along the line. If you don't show your work (unless I believe you could reasonably do it in your head), I may not give you full credit, even if the answer is right. If you can really do something in your head, that's great, but when in doubt, write it down.  It is also very important that you write what you mean. I will correct your notation the first few times, but I will start counting it wrong if you continue to write things incorrectly. In addition, please write clearly and legibly. If I can't read it, I won't grade it.

Time required and outside help:

To do homework and study requires two or three times as much time outside of class as the time you spend in class in order to succeed in this course. If you need more out-of-class help than you can obtain in your instructor's office hours, free tutoring is available in any of ACC's Learning Labs.
ACC main campuses have Learning Labs which offer free first-come, first-serve tutoring in mathematics courses. The locations, contact information and hours of availability of the Learning Labs are posted at:


Precalculus - Functions and Graphs, MATH 2412 Student Learning Outcomes (Course Objectives): Upon successful completion of the course, a student should be able to:


Appropriate use of technology will be encouraged throughout the course.

The General Education Competency of:


ACC College Policies
Statement on Scholastic Dishonesty - A student attending ACC assumes responsibility for conduct compatible with the mission of the college as an educational institution.  Students have the responsibility to submit coursework that is the result of their own thought, research, or self-expression.  Students must follow all instructions given by faculty or designated college representatives when taking examinations, placement assessments, tests, quizzes, and evaluations.  Actions constituting scholastic dishonesty include, but are not limited to, plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, collusion, and falsifying documents.    Penalties for scholastic dishonesty will depend upon the nature of the violation and may range from lowering a grade on one assignment to an “F” in the course and/or expulsion from the college.  See the Student Standards of Conduct and Disciplinary Process and other policies at

Student Rights and Responsibilities - Students at the college have the rights accorded by the U.S. Constitution to freedom of speech, peaceful assembly, petition, and association. These rights carry with them the responsibility to accord the same rights to others in the college community and not to interfere with or disrupt the educational process. Opportunity for students to examine and question pertinent data and assumptions of a given discipline, guided by the evidence of scholarly research, is appropriate in a learning environment. This concept is accompanied by an equally demanding concept of responsibility on the part of the student. As willing partners in learning, students must comply with college rules and procedures.

Statement on Students with Disabilities - Each ACC campus offers support services for students with documented disabilities. Students with disabilities who need classroom, academic or other accommodations must request them through Student Accessibility Services (SAS, formerly OSD).  Students are encouraged to request accommodations when they register for courses or at least three weeks before the start of the semester, otherwise the provision of accommodations may be delayed.

Students who have received approval for accommodations from SAS for this course must provide the instructor with the ‘Notice of Approved Accommodations’ from SAS before accommodations will be provided.  Arrangements for academic accommodations can only be made after the instructor receives the ‘Notice of Approved Accommodations’ from the student.

Students with approved accommodations are encouraged to submit the ‘Notice of Approved Accommodations’ to the instructor at the beginning of the semester because a reasonable amount of time may be needed to prepare and arrange for the accommodations.  Additional information about Student Accessibility Services is available at  HYPERLINK ""

Safety Statement - Austin Community College is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for study and work. You are expected to learn and comply with ACC environmental, health and safety procedures and agree to follow ACC safety policies. Additional information on these can be found at Because some health and safety circumstances are beyond our control, we ask that you become familiar with the Emergency Procedures poster and Campus Safety Plan map in each classroom. Additional information about emergency procedures and how to sign up for ACC Emergency Alerts to be notified in the event of a serious emergency can be found at

Please note, you are expected to conduct yourself professionally with respect and courtesy to all. Anyone who thoughtlessly or intentionally jeopardizes the health or safety of another individual will be dismissed from the day’s activity, may be withdrawn from the class, and/or barred from attending future activities.

You are expected to conduct yourself professionally with respect and courtesy to all. Anyone who thoughtlessly or intentionally jeopardizes the health or safety of another individual will be immediately dismissed from the day’s activity, may be withdrawn from the class, and/or barred from attending future activities.

Use of ACC email - All College e-mail communication to students will be sent solely to the student’s ACCmail account, with the expectation that such communications will be read in a timely fashion. ACC will send important information and will notify you of any college related emergencies using this account.  Students should only expect to receive email communication from their instructor using this account.  Likewise, students should use their ACCmail account when communicating with instructors and staff.  Instructions for activating an ACCmail account can be found at

Testing Center Policy - Under certain circumstances, an instructor may have students take an examination in a testing center.  Students using the Academic Testing Center must govern themselves according to the Student Guide for Use of ACC Testing Centers and should read the entire guide before going to take the exam.  To request an exam, one must have:

·    ACC Photo ID
·    Course Abbreviation (e.g., ENGL)
·    Course Number (e.g.,1301)
·    Course Synonym (e.g., 10123)
·    Course Section (e.g., 005)
·    Instructor's Name
Do NOT bring cell phones to the Testing Center.  Having your cell phone in the testing room, regardless of whether it is on or off, will revoke your testing privileges for the remainder of the semester.  ACC Testing Center policies can be found at

Student And Instructional Services - ACC strives to provide exemplary support to its students and offers a broad variety of opportunities and services.  Information on these services and support systems is available at: Links to many student services and other information can be found at: For help setting up your ACCeID, ACC Gmail, or ACC Blackboard, see a Learning Lab Technician at any ACC Learning Lab.

Concealed Handgun Policy - The Austin Community College District concealed handgun policy ensures compliance with Section 411.2031 of the Texas Government Code (also known as the Campus Carry Law), while maintaining ACC’s commitment to provide a safe environment for its students, faculty, staff, and visitors. Beginning August 1, 2017, individuals who are licensed to carry (LTC) may do so on campus premises except in locations and at activities prohibited by state or federal law, or the college’s concealed handgun policy. It is the responsibility of license holders to conceal their handguns at all times. Persons who see a handgun on campus are asked to contact the ACC Police Department by dialing 222 from a campus phone or 512-223-7999. Refer to the concealed handgun policy online at


Course Outline and Approximate Calendar:
Please note:  schedule changes may occur during the semester.
Any changes will be announced in class.







1.1 - 1.2

Functions and their domains and ranges



1.3 - 1.4

Rates of change and the behavior of graphs, composition of functions



Holiday - no class



1.5 - 1.6

Transformation of functions and absolute value functions



1.7, 2.3

Inverse functions, modeling with linear functions



3.3 - 3.4

The graphs of polynomial functions




Rational functions: end behavior, asymptotes, intercepts, removable discontinuities, and graphing




Modeling using variation


Test 1 – Dates to be announced in class



4.1 - 4.2

Exponential functions and their graphs



4.3 - 4.4

Logarithmic functions and their graphs



4.5 - 4.6

Properties of logarithms and modeling with exponential and logarithmic functions



4.6 - 4.7

More solving equations and modeling with exponential and logarithmic functions




More modeling with exponential and logarithmic functions



Ch 5 review

Review of basic trig definitions and the unit circle



Ch 6 review

Review of graphing trigonometric functions



Ch 6 review

Review of graphing trigonometric functions


Test 2 – Dates to be announced in class




Solving trigonometric equations




Modeling with trigonmetric equations




Polar coordinates




Graphing in polar coordinates




Parametric equations: parameterizing a curve, eliminating the parameter, converting back and forth between Cartesian curves and parametric form




Graphing parametric equations, parametric vs. component plots








More vectors


Test 3 – Dates to be announced in class




Conic sections: the ellipse




Conic sections: the hyperbola




Conic sections: the parabola



11.1 - 11.2

Sequences and arithmetic sequences



11.3 - 11.4

Geometric sequences and series




More series, review for final exam



Final Exam, Part 1



Final Exam, Part 2

This webpage was created by Marcus McGuff.
It was last updated on September 4, 2017 .