01:640:123 - Preparation for Calculus I

Course Description

Math 123: Preparation for Calculus I is a half-semester course. It is designed for students currently enrolled in Calculus I (Math 135 or Math 151) that need additional preparation to successfully complete the course. This course is an opportunity for a productive second half of the semester and for students to best set themselves up for future success in calculus.

Students in this course will work through an individualized review of algebra and precalculus topics. This is not simply a shorter version of existing precalculus courses. Rather, the course is backwards designed to include only that material which is vitally important for success in calculus, and will be taught using innovative methods such as flipped classrooms and other active learning techniques.

This course is 4 credits, of which 2 are academic credits (counting toward graduation), and 2 are E credits (counting toward your registration total), so students who switch from calculus will remain at the same registration total. 


Course Format

This course is both flipped and hybrid.

A flipped course is one in which students are first introduced to a topic before arriving in class by working through videos, reading textbook sections, or completing other assigned activities. Students are not expected to have a complete understanding of the material before class. Rather, this format is designed for students to learn what they can on their own so that the instructor can more efficiently gear class time to focus on the things that students are having the most difficulty with.

This course is hybrid because it only meets in person twice per week, while a typical 4-credit course would meet 3 times per week. The time that would normally be spent in a third class meeting will instead be time that students are expected to allocate for the online homework and other assignments. Although the course only meets in person twice per week, the expected workload is the same as that in calculus.



Students in this course must purchase access to the online homework system Knewton Alta for the duration of the course. All other course materials, such as videos or textbook readings, will be available in Knewton Alta or on the Canvas site. 


Enrollment in Math 123

Students can only enroll in this course if they are currently enrolled in Calculus I, Math 135 or Math 151. Enrollment in Math 123 is by special permission number (SPN) only. Students who have been identified as a good fit for the course will receive an invitation to apply in their official Rutgers email account. Students who would like to apply but who do not receive an invitation should talk to their instructor. Because of the limited number of seats, submitting an application does not guarantee a spot in Math 123. For students whose applications are approved, an SPN will be sent to their advisor, who will enroll the student in Math 123 and drop the student from Calculus I.


Will I receive a W for my calculus course when I switch?

No. Students who switch into Math 123 from either Math 135 or Math 151 will NOT receive a W for their calculus enrollment. In order for this switch to process correctly, it must be handled by an advisor, so all SPNs will be sent to the advising staff of the student’s school, rather than to the student directly. More detailed information about this process will be sent out when students are informed of the application decisions.


I passed the RU Ready Test. Why am I being invited/encouraged to switch into Math 123?

A passing score on the RU Ready Test shows a basic level of preparation for the course but does not necessarily indicate that a student is well prepared for calculus. Some students with a low passing score may just need some review and will go on to be successful in their calculus course, while others may need more substantial review and practice. Invitations were based on students' RU Ready scores, which alone provide limited insight into a student’s course performance. Students should discuss with their calculus instructors their performance in the course so far to get a more accurate assessment of whether they should consider switching into Math 123.


Can I apply for Math 123 without being invited?

Yes. All students currently enrolled in Math 135 or Math 151 are welcome to apply for a seat in Math 123. If you would like to apply, talk to your instructor for guidance and details on the application process.


Course Schedule


 week 7  Introduction to course    1.2, 1.3
 week 8  1.4, 1.5, 1.6  2.2, 2.5
 week 9  2.6, 2.7, 2.8  3.1, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 4.1    
 week 10  5.2, 5.5, Review  Midterm
 week 11  6.2, 6.3  6.4, 6.5
 week 12  6.6, 6.7  Thanksgiving
 week 13  7.1, 7.2  7.3, 7.4
 week 14  8.1, 8.2  9.1, 9.5
 week 15  Review  Reading Days
 Finals week  Final Exam  


1.2 - Exponents and Scientific Notation

1.3 - Radicals and Rational Exponents

1.4 - Polynomials

1.5 - Factoring Polynomials

1.6 - Rational Expressions

2.2 - Linear and Rational Equations in One Variable

2.5 - Quadratic Equations

2.6 - Other Types of Equations

2.7 - Linear Inequalities and Absolute Value Inequalities

2.8 - Inequalities Requiring Factoring

3.1 - Functions and Function Notation

3.3 - Domain and Range

3.4 - Rates of Change and Behavior of Graphs

3.5 - Composition of Functions

4.1 - Linear Functions

5.2 - Graphs of Polynomial and Power Functions

5.5 - Rational Functions

6.2 - Graphs of Exponential Functions

6.3 - Logarithmic Functions

6.4 - Graphs of Logarithmic Functions

6.5 - Logarithmic Properties

6.6 - Exponential and Logarithmic Equations

6.7 - Exponential and Logarithmic Models

7.1 - Angles as Rotations and Arc Length

7.2 - Right Triangle Trigonometry

7.3 - The Unit Circle

7.4 - The Other Trigonometric Functions

8.1 - Sine and Cosine Graphs

8.2 - Graphs of Other Trigonometric Functions

9.1 - Fundamental Trigonometric Identities

9.5 - Solving Trigonometric Equations


Schedule of Sections:

Disclaimer: Posted for informational purposes only

This material is posted by the faculty of the Mathematics Department at Rutgers New Brunswick for informational purposes. While we try to maintain it, information may not be current or may not apply to individual sections. The authority for content, textbook, syllabus, and grading policy lies with the current instructor.

Information posted prior to the beginning of the semester is frequently tentative, or based on previous semesters. Textbooks should not be purchased until confirmed with the instructor. For generally reliable textbook information—with the exception of sections with an alphabetic code like H1 or T1, and topics courses (197,395,495)—see the textbook list.