Precalculus, 2nd Edition

Precalculus, 2nd Edition PDF

Author: Coburn Professor, John W. (

Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education


Publish Date: February 13, 2009

ISBN-10: 0077276507

Pages: 1072

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

Precalculus tends to be a challenging course for many students. They don’t see the connections that precalculus has to their life or why it is so critical that they take and pass this course for both technical and nontechnical careers alike. Others may enter into this course underprepared or improperly placed and with very little motivation.

Instructors are faced with several challenges as well. They are given the task of improving pass rates and student retention while energizing a classroom full of students comprised of nearly every major. Furthermore, it can be difficult to distinguish between students who are likely to succeed and students who may struggle until after the first test is given.
The goal of the Coburn series is to provide both students and instructors with tools to address these challenges, as well as the diversity of the students taking this course, so that you can experience greater success in precalculus. For instance, the comprehensive exercise sets have a range of difficulty that provides very strong support for weaker students, while advanced students are challenged to reach even further. The rest of this preface further explains the tools that John Coburn and McGraw-Hill have developed and how they can be used to connect students to precalculus and connect instructors to their students.

The Coburn Precalculus Series provides you with strong tools to achieve better outcomes in your Precalculus course as follows:
▶ Better Student Preparedness
▶Increased Student Engagement
▶Solid Skill Development
▶Strong Connections

Better Student Preparedness
No two students have the same strengths and weaknesses in mathematics. Typically students will enter any math course with different preparedness levels. For most students who have trouble retaining or recalling concepts learned in past courses, basic review is simply not enough to sustain them successfully throughout the course. Moreover, instructors whose main focus is to prepare students for the next course do not have adequate time in or out of class to individually help each student with review material.
ALEKS Prep uniquely assesses each student to determine their individual strengths and weaknesses and informs the student of their capabilities using a personalized pie chart. From there, students begin learning through ALEKS via a personalized learning path uniquely designed for each student. ALEKS Prep interacts with students like a private tutor and provides a safe learning environment to remediate their individual knowledge gaps of the course pre-requisite material outside of class.
ALEKS Prep is the only learning tool that empowers students by giving them an opportunity to remediate individual knowledge gaps and improve their chances for success. ALEKS Prep is especially effective when used in conjunction with ALEKS Placement and ALEKS 3.0 course-based software.
▶ Increased Student Engagement
What makes John Coburn’s applications unique is that he is constantly thinking mathematically. John’s applications are spawned during a trip to Chicago, a phone call with his brother or sister, or even while watching the evening news for the latest headlines. John literally takes notes on things that he sees in everyday life and connects these situations to math. This truly makes for relevant applications that are born from real-life experiences as opposed to applications that can seem fictitious or contrived.
▶ Solid Skill Development
The Coburn series intentionally relates the examples to the exercise sets so there is a strong connection between what students are learning while working through the examples in each section and the homework exercises that they complete. In turn, students who attempt to work the exercises first can surely rely on the examples to offer support as needed. Because of how well the examples and exercises are connected, key concepts are easily understood and students have plenty of help when using the book outside of class.
There are also an abundance of exercise types to choose from to ensure that homework challenges a wide variety of skills. Furthermore, John reconnects students to earlier chapter material with Mid-Chapter Checks; students have praised these exercises for helping them understand what key concepts require additional practice.
▶ Strong Connections
John Coburn’s experience in the classroom and his strong connections to how students comprehend the material are evident in his writing style. This is demonstrated by the way he provides a tight weave from topic to topic and fosters an environment that doesn’t just focus on procedures but illustrates the big picture, which is something that so often is sacrificed in this course. Moreover, he deploys a clear and supportive writing style, providing the students with a tool they can depend on when the teacher is not available, when they miss a day of class, or simply when working on their own.

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