M408R, Calculus for Biologists

53868: TuTh 5-6, BUR 130

53869: TuTh 4-5, BUR 224

- Learning the key ideas of calculus, which I call the
**six pillars**.- Close is good enough (limits)
- Track the changes (derivatives)
- What goes up has to stop before is can come down (max/min)
- The whole is the sum of the parts (integrals)
- The whole change is the sum of the partial changes (fundamental theorem)
- One variable at a time.

- Learning how to analyze a scientific situation and model it mathematically.
- Learning to analyze a mathematical model using calculus.
- Learning how to apply the results of the model back into the real world.
- Learning enough formulas and calculational methods to make the
other goals possible.
There are three questions associated with every mathematical
idea in existence:
- What is it?
- How do you compute it?
- What is it good for?

**all**your time looking at the big picture! You need some practice sweating the details, too.

**No late work** will be accepted for any reason other than
religious holidays.
As noted elsewhere, I will
drop some of the assignment scores to allow for the fact that *stuff
happens*, much of it beyond our control.
Please do not ask
if I will accept a late assignment. I won't.

- An "A" means that you understand the ideas of the course well enough that you can use them even in unusual settings.
- A "B" means that you can do the standard problems we have done during the semester, but struggle with novel applications.
- A "C" means that you understand the techniques of the class well enough to handle a class that has M408R as a prerequisite.
- A "D" means that you have learned a substantial amount, but that you are not prepared to take that successor course.
- An "F" means that you have failed to grasp the essential concepts of the course.

Grading isn't an exact science, and
I'm only going to adjust
cutoffs. Nobody will leapfrog anybody else;
if you have more points
than your buddy, then your grade will be at least as good as your
buddy's.
Furthermore, a 90% average **will** guarantee you at least an A-, an 80%
average a B-, and a 70% average a C-.
My cutoffs are usually
more generous than that, but each semester is unique.

Counselling and Mental Health Center

Student Services Bldg (SSB), 5th Floor

Hours: M--F 8am--5pm

512 471 3515

www.cmhc.utexas.edu

For what it's worth, I had serious anxiety issues myself about a dozen years ago. I know how hard it can be. A combination of counselling and medication helped me turn things around. There is no shame in seeking help, and the upside can be enormous.