Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)


Mathematical Sciences

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Michel Helfgott

Committee Members

Robert B. Gardner, Daryl Stephens


Many students face tremendous difficulty in high school and/or college level calculus courses. The author hopes that by introducing students to the following nontraditional three topics prior to calculus, students' understanding of calculus will be enhanced. This thesis focuses on the following topics:

  • Tangent Lines to Conics
  • Maxima and Minima
  • Biquadratic Equations

Because these topics are not generally covered in precalculus courses, there are several possible uses for them. An instructor could use the material as:

  • An added classroom resource
  • Project assignments for outside classroom study
  • A student resource for precalculus advanced studies, or
  • An independent study

This thesis assumes that the student is well prepared for the precalculus course by having a good understanding of foundational algebra skills.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.