Teacher and student undergo online calculus

Limits, derivatives, integrals, oh my!

Students in Calculus class learn about these and other mathematical terms throughout the year. However, the teacher of that class, Amber Johnson, and one of her Calculus students, senior Spencer Tolle, have decided to take their math to the next level and have signed up for an advanced online calculus course.

“It is an online, free, six-week intensive course, designed to help people pass the Calculus AB test, which will exempt you from certain math requirements in college,” Johnson explained. “It is to see if someone is actually capable of not having to redo Calculus 1 and being fine going into a more advanced calculus class.”

The Calculus AB test allows students who perform well on it to skip their first calculus class in college. This is a major motivating factor to Tolle.

“I just really want to pass it, because it’s a difficult test, I’d get a semester off from college because I’d already have a credit from it,” he said. “It’s just really important to pass the AB calculus test.”

The course, which is designed to prepare students for the test, requires plenty of commitment from its participants.

Johnson, who plans to use what she learns to influence future classes, looks forward to the workload of the course.

“[It is] very, very, very, very, very, very labor intensive,” Johnson said. “We are going to offer Calculus AB here, that’s my goal….this is letting me know how in-depth we need to get.”

Some students, however, declined to participate in the course because of the work involved.

Junior Mason Bivens is one of these students.

“I do enjoy calculus,” Bivens said. “Between running, and state coming up, and band, and state coming up in that, and working on my pilot’s licence, and other competitions in the school, I wouldn’t have had enough time to properly pursue the calculus.”

So it’s just the teacher and the student blazing the unexplored wilderness of AB calculus together.