New math implementation for the 2018-2019 school year


One student is doing extra problems to strengthen their math skills. Students who are academically advanced will be able to take multivariable calculus as juniors or seniors if their grades allow.

Sreelikhi Vangavolu, Bear Facts contributor

Algebra 2, Precalculus, Calculus AB, and Calculus BC, but what’s next? The math department is adding a new math class for academically advanced students in the 2018-2019 school year.

A new Calculus 3 class, also known as multivariable calculus, will be put in place next year for students who have completed AP Calculus BC successfully, with a score of 4 or 5 on the AP exam, according to Julie Bryniczka, math department head.

When we looked at our calculus curriculum we realized that, traditionally, students went from Calculus AB to Calculus BC. We were one of the few schools who required students to take AB and then BC, so we re-evaluated the curriculum,” Bryniczka said.

Normally, students take Algebra 2, Precalculus, and then Calculus AB, but if they perform well in Precalculus they can move directly into Calculus BC. Multivariable calculus is meant to be a class for the advanced students who want to pursue a higher math education as juniors or seniors, according to Bryniczka.

 “[Calculus 3] is for our strongest math students coming into Honors Algebra 2 [as freshman], we now have a fourth year math course for them housed in school, also earning dual credit [2 credits that will be transferred] to the university of Illinois,” Bryniczka said.

Since Calculus 3 is a post-AP class, it does not encompass a traditional AP class setting and there will be no AP test; however, since it is a post-high school course, it will be weighted as an AP class, according to Bryniczka.

“Their grade and credit will be determined by a test they take in class, not like a traditional AP test that happens in May,” Bryniczka said.

Bryniczka believes that the class is good for anyone who wants to go into a career involving math, engineering, and etc. It’s even good for anyone interested in a higher math education.

“I think [taking Calculus 3] is important for students going into a STEAM career, that is going to be using Calc 3. The first one that comes to mind is an engineer,” Bryniczka said. “[Also] being able to take Calc 3 courses in high school and get credit for it puts [you] ahead and or makes [you] more competitive than [your] peers applying to the same colleges and schools.”

Like Bryniczka, students also believe having a higher math education is beneficial, and being able to take those higher level classes teaches them skills needed in their daily life.

“[Having a higher math education] definitely allows you to be be a better problem solver and makes you a better thinker,” Sophie Young, Calculus BC senior, said. “The higher you get into a math class the teachers push you to be independent and to learn the concepts on your own.”

Since the math class is a new addition, the math department and students are looking forward to a successful year ahead, according to Bryniczka.

“We’re just really excited for this opportunity and we really hope students enjoy it,” Bryniczka said. “And this is the first opportunity that we have in the math department for dual credit so we are excited about that.”