Background information: I did MAT1330 twice with different professors. The first one was in the Fall of 2016, the second one was in the summer of 2017.
This course is tougher than MAT 1300 since it’s calculus but more oriented towards science students. The material is not hard per say, I would say it’s standard calculus that is more focused on the real life applications in the scientific world.
Both professors that I had for MAT1330 were more than helpful when it came to asking questions. The professors were very approachable and I remember during the Summer of 2017 I would go to the professor and sit with him to go through questions I got wrong or didn’t understand.
I would definitely recommend approaching your professor during their office hours and try to go through the questions you had gotten wrong in the assignments to try and understand what went wrong or why you’re stuck.
The MAT1330: Calculus for Life sciences course was a great course to hammer down calculus materials. A lot of it was a review of highschool calculus, just a little more fast paced. The course goes over basic algebra and mathematical concepts at the beginning, then it dives into more complex topics such as: discrete-time dynamical system, Analysis of DTDS, cobwebbing, equilibria, limits, infinity, continuity, chain rule, L'Hopital’s rule, integration, etc. In class, there is a huge focus on understanding the theory behind the concept and why things are the way they are. During the exam however, there is a lot more focus on actually solving questions where real life applications will come into play. At the time we were required to memorize the formulas so be sure to really hammer down each and every formula, the last thing you need is forgetting whether there was a missing - sign.
Tips to master MAT1330 materials:
- Understand class material. It’s easy to memorize a formula and plug in numbers, but it’s important to understand what formula is used where. Sometimes we were also required to explain our final answers so that’s where your understanding of the materials becomes imperative. If you got a final answer of 5 for a question, you need to explain what 5 is, what it means in the context of the question. If the question doesn’t require you to explain the answer though don’t bother explaining it since those are precious minutes that you can’t afford to lose especially when online exams are a thing with such tight time limits.
- Do NOT plagiarize! Don’t copy your friend’s answers. This won’t help you, trust me. Allocate 2 days or so to doing your assignments or projects and always be sure to start it early so you can have enough time to ask questions and take breaks between answering questions so you can go back and look at them from different angles.
- Do the assigned homework and the book exercises. A great thing about MAT 1330 is the assigned homework and exercises are very very similar to the exam questions. They’re so similar, sometimes they use the same question or a variation of the question for the exam. Be sure to do your homework and go over it before exams to familiarize yourself with the questions.
- Use the DGD sessions properly. The best way to do DGDs in my opinion is first going through the questions by yourself, then going to the DGD and doing them again with the TA. This way you know what to expect and know what questions you should focus on or have difficulties with. Also you’re able to ask specific questions about each exercise and correct any mistakes you might have done or misconceptions you might have had about the material.
The MAT1330 course is structured to provide students with many learning opportunities. From up to 10 exercises a week to practice with, to biweekly assignments and 2 midterms, all these are opportunities to correct your mistakes. Your grade is made up of: homeworks and assignments, 2 midterms, and a final exam.
The exams are meant to reflect what you work on by yourself at home, like in the assignments and the book exercises. Those very questions are what will come in the exam. I would really suggest doing the assignments in a group or atleast with one other person. Try to solve them on a white board and talk through the solution. Don’t forget to understand the answer, not just find the final number. Practice makes perfect!
MAT1330 is a fun course that I really enjoyed. The first time I did the course I got a D+, however when I repeated it in the summer and used all these tips I ended the course with an A+! Best of luck to everyone!