Math 141.01

Calculus I

Spring 2017



Professor Tom Valente


Office Hours:

            MTWR 2:30-4PM  Bagby 123,   x6210


Class Meetings:

            MWF  9:30-10:20 and Tu 1:30-2:20 in Bagby 111


Required Textbook: 

            Calculus of a Single Variable, 10th Edition, by Larson and Edwards (2014).


Course Description: 


The most important concept in studying Calculus is that of limit of a function. Thus, our goal for the first part of the course will be to build to the point where we have a reasonable understanding of what “limit of a function” is. With this concept, we then define an important class of functions known as continuous functions. We can also define the notions of derivative, and later, integral of a function as particular kinds of limits. Once we define and understand the derivative, we can interpret it as a rate of change, and use it in a variety of problems having to do with rates of change and, importantly, optimization problems.


Once we understand the integral, we can interpret it geometrically as an area and begin to use it also as a tool for solving problems in a wide range of fields.  The course will culminate with an amazing theorem known as the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus, which relates the two seemingly unrelated concepts of derivative and integral!



You are permitted no more than four unexcused absences, in accordance with the policy on p.42 of The Academic Catalogue.  Three such absences may precipitate a WF warning letter, sent to you and to your adviser. Note that attendance will affect a portion of your grade (see below).


Outline of Topics:

Functions and their Graphs

Inequalities and Absolute Value


Functions and Limits:  


                        The Derivative

                                    The Definition

                                    Geometric interpretation

Differentiation techniques                                         

                                    Applications of the Derivative


            The Definite Integral: 


                                    Geometric interpretation

Integration techniques


The Fundamental Theorem of Calculus.




Your grade is computed as follows:


                        4 in-class exams                                              400 points

                        Quizzes/HW                                                    100 points

                        Final Exam  (Wednesday May 10th  9AM)     200 points


Additionally, if at the end of the semester you have no more than four

absences (excused or unexcused),  I will reward you by dropping either your lowest in-class exam grade or your homework/quizzes grade.



Exam Policy:

The 4 in-class exams are tentatively scheduled for the following days:

                               February 7th,, February 28th,  March 28th,  April 25th

Makeup exams are not a given unless you have a very good reason and you contact me beforehand.



Plenty of homework will be assigned during the course of the semester, and these problems will serve as practice for quizzes, which will be given on a frequent basis.

Enough homework will be assigned, so that you will need to spend at least some time each night on Calculus.  Please seek me out after class or during my office hours if you have questions on the homework.  I enjoy the give-and-take that comes with helping students and the learning that hopefully comes about in one-on-one sessions.





Slope of a Curve

Area Under A Curve