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Math 160: Survey of Calculus -- Fall 2015, Iowa State University

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Math 160: Survey of Calculus, Fall 2015

Instructor: Dr. William DeMeo
Email: [williamdemeo at gmail]( 160: (insert an informative subject))
Office: Carver 466.
Office hours: W 9--10:50am, F 9--9:50am.
Lecture time and location: MWF 8--8:50am, Carver 0001.

Teaching Assistant: Mercedes Coleman
Email: [coleman1 at iastate]( 160: (insert an informative subject))
Office: Carver 419
Office Hours: MT 10--12am.

  • Section 4: T 8--8:50am Carver 0074.
  • Section 6: T 12:10--1pm Carver 0282.
  • Section 8: T 9--9:50am Beyer 2308.

Supplemental Instruction Leader: Ben Laswell
Email: [blaswell at iastate]( 160: (insert an informative subject))
SI Sessions:

  • Monday 6:10--7pm.
  • Wednesday 5:10--6pm.
  • Friday 4:10--5pm.
    Location: Science II Room 0115

Course Webpage:

WebAssign Class Key: iastate 8774 8288
(For login instructions, see the Online Homework section below.)


Number of Credits: 4

Remarks about office hours: The regularly scheduled office hours listed above are subject to change. Changes will be announced during lecture. It is helpful (but not required) to send me an email in advance to let me know when you plan to visit.

Table of Contents


You are now reading the main course web page. The paragraphs below serve as the syllabus for Math 160 Sections 4, 6, 8.

This page, as well as the content directory above, and its subdirectories, will be updated throughout the semester. Students are expected to visit this page periodically.

Please bookmark this page or, better yet, click here to email the url of this page to yourself!

The ISU Blackboard system will be used only for recording test scores and grades. Please Note, the Blackboard system often reports cumulative grade totals that bear little relation to the course grades as they will be computed at the end of the semester. If you want to find out where you stand in the class, please keep track of your grades and refer to the Grading Policy section below.

Class Meeting Times

Lecture: MWF 8--8:50am Carver 0001.


  • Sec 4: T 8--8:50am Carver 0074.
  • Sec 6: T 12:10--1pm Carver 0282.
  • Sec 8: T 9--9:50am Beyer 2308.

Overview, Prerequisites, Outcomes

We will cover Chapters 1 through 6 of the textbook, which includes the following topics:

  1. Preliminaries
  2. Functions, Limits, and the Derivative
  3. Differentiation
  4. Applications of the Derivative
  5. Exponential and Logarithmic Functions
  6. Integration

Satisfactory performance on placement exam, 2 years of high school algebra, 1 year of geometry.

Learning Outcomes
Generally speaking, students will master concepts and solve problems based on functions, limits, derivatives, introductory integrals, the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus, and applications of derivatives and integrals. For a more detailed list of the course objectives, see the appendix section Detailed Course Objectives below, or see the Math Department's generic Math 160 page at

Textbook Information

Title: Applied Calculus for the Managerial, Life, and Social Sciences.
Author: Soo Tan
Edition: Looseleaf custom edition + WebAssign access key
ISBN: 9781305744295

The bookstore will sell a discounted package that includes the looseleaf textbook bundled with a WebAssign access code. The code includes access to the online learning tools and an electronic version of the book.

Important Note: You are required to have a WebAssign access code so that you can complete the online homework for this course. It is also highly recommended that you have a hard copy of the textbook. Therefore, you are encouraged to buy the bundled version of the book from the bookstore, which comes with both a hard copy of the book and a WebAssign access code.

Having said that, the version of the textbook you have is not important. What matters most is that you have access to WebAssign.

For your reference, the edition of the textbook that your instructor will be following (since it was provided by the Math Department) is the 9th edition of "Applied Calculus for the Managerial, Life, and Social Sciences: A Brief Approach."

For your reference, here are links to the WebAssign and Amazon pages for the edition of the textbook that your instructor will use:


There will be three midterm exams each worth 15%, and a final exam worth 25% of the course grade.

  • MIDTERM EXAM 1 (focus on Chapters 1 and 2)
    DATE: Tuesday, September 22.
    TIME: your usual recitation meeting time.
    LOCATION: your usual recitation classroom.

  • MIDTERM EXAM 2 (focus on Chapters 3 and 4)
    DATE: Tuesday, October 20.
    TIME: your usual recitation meeting time.
    LOCATION: your usual recitation classroom.

  • MIDTERM EXAM 3 (focus on Chapters 5 and 6)
    DATE: Tuesday, November 17.
    TIME: your usual recitation meeting time.
    LOCATION: your usual recitation classroom.

  • FINAL EXAM on Chapters 1--6.
    DATE: Monday, December 14, 2015.
    TIME: 7:30--9:30am.
    LOCATION: Carver 0001.

The final exam will be cumulative, that is, it will cover everything we have learned during the semester.

In accordance with university policy, the final exam is mandatory and must be taken by all students at the scheduled time. Do not make travel plans before the date of the final exam.


There will be approximately 11 short quizzes, administered roughly once per week during recitation.

Under no circumstances will there be any make-up quizzes. To accommodate circumstances that cause a student to miss a quiz, the lowest quiz score will be dropped at the end of the semester. The remaining quizzes will account for 15% of the final course grade.

Online Homework

Solving lots of problems is the best way to prepare yourself to do well on the tests and quizzes, and ultimately to do well in the course.

The online homework will account for 15% of the course grade and will be assigned once per week, typically due each Tuesday by midnight.

All homework for this course will be done with WebAssign. You will enroll yourself in our course by going to the WebAssign website and using the following class key:

WebAssign Class Key: iastate 8774 8288

The problems assigned and the due dates will be clearly indicated on the WebAssign website, so students must login frequently and check for newly assigned homework. (The last assignment will be due during the last week of the semester, also known as "dead week.")

Late homework will not be accepted or graded.

The lowest homework score will be dropped and not counted toward the final course grade.

Handwritten Homework

To get the most out of the homework, and to prepare yourself well for the in-class (hand-written) tests and exams, it is a very good idea to print out hard copies of each WebAssign assignment, take these hard copies to a quiet place like the library, and work on them using a pencil. Thereafter, you should go through the assignment from the beginning while logged into WebAssign and submit your answers, using your handwritten notes and solutions as a guide.

Hand-written work will not be submitted for grading. However, for the purpose of asking questions about homework in lecture, recitation section, or office hours, as well as for studying for exams, it can be very helpful to have printed out hard copies of all the homework assignments.

Make-up Policy

There are no make-up homework or quizzes for any reason. If you must miss a quiz or you fail to submit homework on time, this will not necessarily hurt your course grade since the lowest quiz and homework scores will be dropped.

Generally speaking, there are no make-up exams. However, if you must miss an exam for one of the legitimate reasons listed below, and if you contact the professor at least five days before the exam date, then you might be able to take a make-up exam before the scheduled exam time.

To request a make-up exam, a student must provide documented evidence of one of the following:

  • Medical excuse - student's own medical emergency.
  • Medical excuse - a member of the student's family has a medical emergency.
  • Extra curricular activities as a representative of Iowa State University.
  • Armed forces deployment (military duty).
  • Officially mandated court appearances, including jury duty.
  • A conflict with another exam or if you have three or more final exams on a given day. (In each case the exam with the fewest students must arrange the make-up exam.)

If you miss an exam due to some unforeseen circumstance, you must contact the professor within one class meeting after the missed test and provide an explanation. If your excuse is accepted, the missed test score may be replaced with 80% of your final exam score. For example, if your excuse is accepted and you score a 90% on the final, then you will receive a 72% for the missed test (0.80*0.90 = 0.72).

Grading Policy

The breakdown of the final course grade is as follows:

  • Final exam: 25 points
  • Mid-term exams: 45 points (15 each)
  • Homework: 15 points total
  • Quizzes/Recitation Grade: 15 points

At the end of the semester, letter grades will be assigned roughly according to the following table. However, the scale may be shifted, depending on overall student performance. All curving (if any) will occur at the end of the semester.

  • A: 94--100
  • A-: 91--93
  • B+: 87--90
  • B: 84--86
  • B-: 81--83
  • C+: 77--80
  • C: 74--76
  • C-: 71--73
  • D+: 67--70
  • D: 64--66
  • D-: 60--63
  • F: 0--59


Students are expected to attend all classes. A grade penalty will be exacted if you have an excessive number of absences (whether excused or unexcused). Specifically, you are permitted (but strongly discouraged from taking) seven absences in total. Each absence in addition to that may result in the deduction of points from your final grade.

In many of the lectures, attendance will be recorded by passing around a sign-in sheet on which you will print and sign your own name. (If another student asks you to sign in for them, don't do it! Forging another student's signature constitutes a violation of the student code of conduct and will be referred to the ISU Office of Judicial Affairs.)

If you plan to leave before class is over, the correct procedure is to mention this to the professor before the start of class. It is impolite and disruptive to your classmates to leave, or even pack up your belongings, before the lecture is over.

3 Ways to Ask Questions

When you don't understand something, please ask a question!

  1. Lecture The best time/place to ask a question is during lecture or recitation or office hours.

  2. Piazza Another good place to ask a question is online discussion forum. This term we will be using Piazza for class discussion and all students should enroll in this forum by visiting the Piazza signup page.

    This system is highly catered to getting you help fast and efficiently from classmates, the TA, and the professor. Rather than emailing questions to the teaching staff, students are encouraged to post questions on Piazza forum. If you have any problems or feedback for the developers, email

    Our class Piazza page is at:

  3. WebAssign Another way to ask a question is by using the "Ask my instructor" link on WebAssign. This method is convenient for the teaching staff because details about the problem you're asking about are automatically embedded in your email.

    Please note: if you use the "Ask my instructor" button, your question may be reposted on our Piazza forum (which is public). If you're uncomfortable with this, please say so in your message.

Email Policy

You may email the instructor and TAs directly, though the response time will generally be slower than if you use one of the preferred methods described above.

If you email the instructor, you must use an informative subject field. If you use this link to email the professor, then some of the required information should pre-populate your message fields. If you do not at least indicate which class you are in, your email may be ignored.

Use of Electronics During Lecture

Silence and refrain from using all electronic devices (phones, ipods, tablets, microwave ovens, etc.) during class and exam periods. The only exception to this policy is the use of computers or tablets for the purpose of referring to an electronic copy of the textbook, or the online (WebAssign) homework problems. Using a computer during lecture to check Facebook, for example, is totally unacceptable. Besides how this affects your own ability to focus on what is being taught in the lecture, computers can be very distracting to other students. Use of electronic devices in lecture for purposes unrelated to calculus will not be tolerated.

Supplemental Instruction

Supplemental Instruction (SI) is an internationally recognized academic support program offering free, regularly scheduled study sessions for traditionally difficult courses. Attend once or attend every session...the choice is up to you, but the data suggests that the more you attend, the higher your final grade will be in the course. Students are encouraged to attend SI at least once per week. More information is at

Academic Honesty

Cheating will not be tolerated. Violations of this policy will be referred to and dealt with by the ISU Office of Judicial Affairs, in a manner consistent with university regulations, which range from a warning to expulsion from the university.

Classroom Policy

In this course, we follow the general university classroom policy:

Students With Disabilities

If you have a documented disability or if you believe that you have a disability that qualifies under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and requires accommodations, you should contact the Student Disability Resources Office for information on appropriate policies and procedures.

The Disability Resources Office
Student Services Building, Room 1076
phone: 515-294-6624, or 515-294-7220, or TDD 294-6335
email: or

You must obtain a Student Academic Accommodation Request (SAAR) from the Disability Resources office and you must contact your instructor early in the semester so that your learning needs may be appropriately met.

Your instructor will be happy to assist with accommodations, but will not provide them retroactively, so the appropriate requests and paperwork should be filed well before the first exam.

More information about disability resources in the Mathematics Department can be found at


Detailed Course Objectives

Functions, Limits and Continuity

  • Understand what a function is, and the relationship of a function to its graph
  • Understand intuitively what the limit of a function is
  • Apply rules to calculate simple limits
  • Understand the intuitive meaning of continuity of a function at a point
  • Use the limit concept to determine where a function is continuous.
  • Use the Intermediate Value Theorem to identify an interval where a continuous function has a root.


  • Use the limit definition to calculate a derivative, or to determine when a derivative fails to exist.
  • Understand and use rules for the derivative of sums, products, and quotients
  • Understand and use the chain rule for computing the derivative of a composite function
  • Rules for computing derivatives of logarithmic and exponential functions
  • Rules for inverse functions, including logarithms and inverse trignometric functions.
  • Use the derivative to find tangent lines to curves.
  • Calculate derivatives of functions defined implicitly.
  • Interpret the derivative as a rate of change.
  • Solve problems involving rates of change of variables subject to a functional relationship (“related rates”)

Applications of Derivatives

  • Find critical points, and use them to locate maxima and minima.
  • Use critical points and signs of first and second derivatives to sketch graphs of functions:
  • Use the first derivative to find intervals where a function is increasing or decreasing.
  • Use the second derivative to determine concavity and find inflection points.
  • Apply the first and second derivative tests to classify critical points.
  • Use calculus to solve simple optimization problems in business and economics (marginal profit, etc.)
  • Use Differential Calculus to solve other kinds of optimization problems.


  • Find antiderivatives of functions.
  • Use antiderivatives to solve simple differential equations (variables separable)
  • Understand the concept of area under a curve, and the connection with antiderivatives given by the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus
  • Apply the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus to evaluate definite integrals
  • Evaluate definite integrals by certain simple rules (substitution, integration by parts, etc.)

Additional Resources


Math 160: Survey of Calculus -- Fall 2015, Iowa State University






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