General Information

Title: MA2560: Calculus II
Time: MWF 10:10-11:00AM, Th 12:30-1:45PM
Location: Hyde 314

Course Information and Policies


A satisfactory grade in MA2550: Calculus I (or equivalent). Note: Students may not receive credit for both MA2520 and MA2560.

Course Description

A continuation of first semester calculus, including further study of integration techniques, improper integrals, infinite series, polar coordinates and parametric functions. We will occasionally make use of software packages, like Sage, which is capable of doing symbolic mathematics.


We will be using Calculus: Early Transcendentals, 7th edition (Thomson/Brooks Cole) by James Stewart. In addition, we will be using WebAssign, which is an online homework system. Each student will need a WebAssign account, and when creating your account you will need our WebAssign Class Key: plymouth 1561 1336. If you need help getting started with WebAssign, I suggest reading the WebAssign Student Quick Start Guide. You have four options for purchasing the textbook; each of which comes bundled with WebAssign. For more information about the different textbook options, go here.

I expect you to be reading the textbook. I will not be covering every detail of the textbook and the only way to achieve a sufficient understanding of the material is to be digesting the reading in a meaningful way. You should be seeking clarification about the material in the textbook whenever necessary by asking questions in class or posting questions to the course forum on our Moodle page page


The primary objective of this course is to aid students in becoming confident and competent in solving problems that require techniques developed in calculus. Successful completion of MA2560 provides students with skills necessary for upper division mathematics courses, such as MA3540: Multivariable Calculus. In this second semester course, we focus on the important problem of how one actually integrates functions. Among the techniques of integration we will learn are the methods of partial fractions and integration by parts. We will also generalize the notion of changing variables (substitution) to study parameterization and new coordinate systems, like polar coordinates. Along the way we will study logarithm, exponential, and hyperbolic trigonometric functions, which are useful in their own right and for integration. Another topic of the semester will be a study of infinite series, which will let us consider "nice" functions as "infinite polynomials", called Taylor Series. Taylor Series will allow us to integrate functions when our previous techniques do not suffice, and provide useful approximations of functions for numerical techniques. Lastly, the purpose of any mathematics class is to challenge and train the mind. Learning mathematics enhances critical thinking and problem solving skills.

Quantitative Reasoning Connection (QRCO)

MA2560 satisfies the Quantitative Reasoning Connection (QRCO) requirement of the PSU General Education Program. Students will enhance their ability to analyze quantitative material, and use quantitative techniques to solve problems.

From the course catalog: Mathematics finds application in all fields of scholarship. All disciplines make use of quantitative reasoning in some way and to some extent.

Students take a three-credit Quantitative Reasoning (Q) course specified as required for their major. This course may be taught within the major discipline or not. It might teach quantitative techniques used as primary or secondary tools within the discipline or might be a course in which students of less quantitative disciplines come to deepen their appreciation of the relevance of quantitative reasoning to us all.


We will have two types of homework assignments.

You are allowed and encouraged to work together on homework. However, each student is expected to turn in their own work.


There will be 3 midterm exams, which are tentatively scheduled for the following Thursdays: February 23, March 29, and April 26. Each exam will be worth 15% of your overall grade. There will also be a cumulative final exam, which will be on Thursday, May 17 at 11:00am–1:30PM (Note: I'm using our Thursday at 12:30–1:45PM time slot to determine when our final exam is). The final exam is worth 15% of your overall grade. Make-up exams will only be given under extreme circumstances, as judged by me. In general, it will be best to communicate conflicts ahead of time.


I expect you to participate and engage in class discussion. Moreover, I will occasionally ask for volunteers (or call students) to present problems at the board. No one should have anxiety about being able to present a perfect solution to a problem. In fact, we can gain so much more from the discussion surrounding a slightly flawed solution. However, students should not volunteer to present a problem that they have no spent time thinking about. Most student presentations will occur on Thursdays and will center around the problems chosen for the Weekly Homework. Your overall participation, in particular your willingness to present, will be worth 10% of your overall grade.

Basis for Evaluation

Your final grade will be determined by the scores of your homework, participation, and exams.

Category Weight Notes
Daily Homework 15% each assignment has equal weight regardless of length
Weekly Homework 15% each assignment worth 10 points
Exam 1 15% Thursday, February 23
Exam 2 15% Thursday, March 29
Exam 3 15% Thursday, April 26
Participation 10% based on your presentations and engagement in class discussions
Final Exam 15% Thursday, May 17 at 11:00am–1:30PM

Grade Determination

Grades may be "massaged" at the end of the semester, but in general you should expect the grades to adhere to the standard letter-grade cutoffs.

Additional Information


Regular attendance is expected and is vital to success in this course, but you will not explicitly be graded on attendance. Yet, repeated absences may impact your participation grade (see above). All students should be familiar with the university attendance policy which can be found on page 45 of the PSU Academic Catalog as well as the Academic Integrity and Fairness in Grading policies as written on pages 40-43 of the PSU Academic Catalog. The catalog may be viewed here.

About Calculators and Other Technology

I am a huge fan of technology and believe that when it is used appropriately, it can greatly enhance one's learning experience. However, when learning, technology should never replace one's own amazing cognitive abilities. When we are discussing concepts in class or when you are doing homework, you should feel free to use whatever resources you feel will help you understand the concepts better. So, feel free to use things like Sage, Wolfram|Alpha, your graphing calculator, etc. when doing homework. However, be warned that I am much more interested in the process by which you arrived at your answer than the answer itself. An answer to a homework or exam question that is correct but lacks justification may be worth little to no points. If you understand a concept, then barring a silly computational error, the correct answer comes along for the ride. Yet, getting the correct answer does not imply that you understand anything! You are not required to purchase a graphing calculator nor will you need them on any of the exams. However, you will be allowed to use a graphing calculator on exams as long as the calculator does not include a computer algebra system (CAS). If you decide to purchase a graphing calculator, I recommend the TI-83 or TI-83 Plus. If you have questions about whether a particular calculator is appropriate or allowed, please ask. I will not spend class time discussing how to use a graphing calculator.

Getting Help

There are many resources available to get help. First, I recommend that you work on homework in groups as much as possible, and to come see me whenever necessary. Also, you are strongly encouraged to ask questions in the course forum on our Moodle page page, as I will post comments there for all to benefit from. To effectively post to the course forum, you will need to learn the basics of LaTeX, the standard language for typesetting in the mathematics community. See the Quick LaTeX guide for help with $\LaTeX$. If you need additional help with $\LaTeX$, post a question in the course forum on our Moodle page.

Also, you can always .

Math Activity Center

You can also visit the Math Activity Center, which is located in Hyde 351. This student-run organization provides peer tutoring services for most 1000 and 2000 level math courses and some 3000 level courses. Tutors are typically math majors interested in teaching math and practicing their instructional skills. You can drop in anytime during open hours.

Student Handbook

The PSU Student Handbook addresses policies pertaining to students with disabilities, religious observation, honor code, general conduct, etc. The Handbook can be found here.

ACT for Growth

All teacher education majors are subject to the Areas of Concern/Targets for Growth policy, which is located here.

ADA Statement

Plymouth State University is committed to providing students with documented disabilities equal access to all university programs and facilities. If you think you have a disability requiring accommodations, you should immediately contact the PASS Office in Lamson Library (535-2270) to determine whether you are eligible for such accommodations. Academic accommodations will only be considered for students who have registered with the PASS Office. If you have a Letter of Accommodation for this course from the PASS Office, please provide the instructor with that information privately so that you and the instructor can review those accommodations. I urge anyone having difficulty with the material to see me during office hours to get extra help.

Closing Remarks

When does the learning happen? It might happen in class, but most likely it happens when you sit down to do your homework. Most of you can follow what happens on the board in class, but the question is, can you do it on your own? To learn best, you must struggle with mathematics on your own. It is supposed to be difficult. However, if you are struggling too much, then there are resources available for you. I am always happy to help you. If my office hours don't work for you, then we can probably find another time to meet. You can also get help from each other. Get a study buddy! Help each other learn. Go the Math Activity Center. It is your responsibility to be aware of how well you understand the material. Don't wait until it is too late if you need help. Ask questions!