Precalculus Syllabus

Southfield High School Syllabus

Department:  Mathematics

Course Name: Precalculus

Textbook:  Precalculus: Functions and Graphs (Publisher: Addison Wesley Longman, Inc. ©2001)            

Teacher:  Ms. Crum                                                                                 Room: C203

 Email:                                                 Phone:  248-746-8600


Conference Period: 2nd  Hour                                      



This course develops advanced topics in mathematics in preparation for the calculus courses offered in high school or in college.  The use of models in making connections between related ideas and real world applications is stressed.  Topics include analysis of various types of functions (linear, quadratic, rational, radical, circular, logarithmic, and exponential), limits, and solving systems of equations using a variety of methods.  Students are expected to use transformations for graphing the functions mentioned above.   Other topics include continuity, end behavior, maxima and minima, composition of functions, inverses, and exponential, logarithmic and trigonometric functions.  Complex numbers as well as conics are also investigated.  If time permits, this course concludes with work on infinite sequences and series, the sum of infinite series and an introduction to the concept of derivative.  A graphing calculator is required.



Students will:

  • learn to graph and analyze functions using domain, range, continuity, zeros, asymptotes, maximums, minimums, and increasing and decreasing behavior
  • be able to determine and interpret the  limits of functions and sequences
  • be able to understand and evaluate derivatives and know how to use them appropriately
  • develop proficiency in the use of the calculator
  • be able to use appropriate formulas and identities from trigonometry
  • be able to express solutions and ideas in written form with descriptions and presentations using correct notation, vocabulary, logic and concepts from this course content and that of previous courses
  • develop problem-solving skills                                                                                         


1. Three-ring binder with 5 dividers
2. Loose-leaf notebook paper
3. Several pencils (preferably mechanical pencils)
4. Journal (can use composition or spiral notebook)

5. Graphing calculator (The mathematics department recommends the TI-83 or TI-84 Plus for all of our students. This calculator provides the technology that is most appropriate for the mathematics taught in high school and in the early years of college. The TI-83 or TI-84 Plus calculators are also allowed for use on the ACT College Entrance Exam.  Please do not purchase a TI-85, TI-86, TI-89 or TI-92 since these calculators have advanced features which our students will not use and they lack basic features which are necessary for our students.)


  1. Follow directions.
  2. Be present, prepared, and on time everyday.
  3. Be respectful to others. Treat your fellow classmates as well as your teacher with respect.
  4. Foul or derogatory language is not allowed in this classroom.
  5. Raise your hand if you want to be recognized.
  6. Tardiness is unacceptable. Do not arrive late to this class.
  7. Do not eat food or candy or drink any liquid other than water in class.
  8. Hand in your homework when you first arrive in class. All homework is due in the beginning of the class period.




A  93 – 100%               B+ 87 – 89                            C+ 77 – 79                            D+ 67 – 69

A- 90 – 92                     B   83 – 86                            C   73 – 76                            D   63 – 66

                                        B– 80 – 82                            C– 70 – 72                            D– 60 – 62 

                                                                                                                                        F      0 – 59                    


Tests/Projects                                                           45%

Quizzes                                                                      30%

Homework/Classwork/Binder/Journal                25%



  • A comprehensive exam will be given at the end of Semester 1 and Semester 2.
  • Each student must take these comprehensive exams.
  • Semester grades are computed based on the following weighted average:

                    30% for each of the three marking periods + 10% Semester Exam



Students who have an “A-“ average or higher for the semester in any non-Advanced Placement course will be exempt from the final exam.



Students are expected to make up all work missed due to an excused absence from class for any reason.  It is the student’s responsibility to make sure that their absence gets recorded as excused on Zangle by the attendance office.  Students will be given the number of class periods missed plus one (1) to turn in missed assignments and class work. Extenuating circumstances may require teacher and student to negotiate reasonable time lines for making up work that both can accept. If a student has an unexcused absence, he/she will not be allowed to make up assignments or tests(s) for that particular day.



Late work is unacceptable for any reason other than an excused absence from school.



In this course the study of mathematics intensifies and students will be expected:

  • To accept responsibility for your own learning.
  • To follow the Southfield Public Schools Board of Education Policy and the Southfield High School Code of Conduct. This includes dress code, electronic devices, hats, and ID’s.
  • To get to class on time everyday. Tardiness will not be tolerated Attendance is a significant part of your class participation percentage. It is vital to achieve the objectives of this course. Extensive absences will significantly lower your grade. Makeup work is only given for excused absences. Otherwise, late work will not be accepted. If you know ahead of time that you will be absent, you must get your work in advance in order to receive credit.
  • You are responsible for finding out what you have missed while you are absent.  Make sure to copy any notes or journal topics missed from a fellow classmate.  Make a study buddy.
  • To come to class prepared everyday to participate and study.
  • To keep a complete binder which includes class notes, vocabulary, classwork, homework, projects, quizzes, and tests. Students are required to keep all their work in a three-ring binder organized with dividers. Binders will be checked each marking period for neatness, completeness and organization. Make sure to follow the binder requirement guidelines handed out in class.
  • To keep a math journal daily.  A math reflection/log journal will be required in order to further develop the student’s mathematical skills and to apply their knowledge of math to understand real-world problems.
  • To bring their book, binder, journal, paper, pencil, and a graphing calculator to class everyday.
  • To wear your student ID everyday.
  • Passes will be only given at the teacher’s discretion during emergency situations. You must be wearing your student ID in those extenuating situations. Make sure to use your passing time wisely. Passes are rarely given.
  • To complete their homework everyday.  Homework is an important part of learning mathematics and will be assigned daily. Every assigned problem should be tried and the answer checked. It is permissible to discuss problems with other students and relatives. It is not permissible to copy another student’s work.
  • To do their own work. Cheating will not be tolerated. Any student caught cheating will be given a zero for the assignment or examination. This applies to those receiving answers as well as those giving answers.
  • To check out the class website daily. This site includes course information and requirements, copies of forms, monthly calendars, homework assignment schedule, problems of the week, helpful math links, etc. This site should be very helpful to you. If you do not have access at home, other places to get access are the public library, computer class, a friend’s computer, etc.  
  • To get extra help if you are having trouble understanding any of the work. Do not wait until it is too late. Almost all students need help at one time or another. Tutoring will be offered on a designated day after school.  Please make an appointment with Ms. Crum if you need extra help.



Success in mathematics depends on doing mathematics on a regular basis. Listening in class and working to understand the concepts during class is important. That is not enough without daily written work, practicing the skills and attempting to do the problem solving. This reinforces the concepts and makes them your own. To this end, homework will be assigned at almost every class meeting. Your regular routine should include the following in order to be successful:

  • Stay positive and keep an open mind
  • Listen in class
  • Take notes in class, keep them in order with dates and the aim of the day written at the top of the page
  • Try every problem
  • Give your best everyday
  • Bring your supplies to class everyday
  • Ask questions when you need clarification
  • Review one day’s assignment before beginning a new one.