Indian illiteracy: PreCalc: Roses and Polo(ar) : MIT admissions

Hi,

 

I took the CLEP exam this friday  for Precalculus and got 88% (71/80) in it. But it made me more satisfied than getting 98% (79/80) in Algebra exam in Dec.The reason is that Precalculus needed use of online graphin calculator (link below) and I had never used any grahping (even scientific one) calc. till 3months back. I imagine that 99% of Indian math bachelors/masters grads never use it either. Here they use it since they are 12 years old.

 

Online graphing calculator free download  http://www.infinitysw.com/link/ets/trial.html

 


 

 

For me it was pretty stressful and I ended up using the online calculator like ordinary one only – for arithmetic calculations and once for finding a cosine value. I reverted to algebraic skills to solve the paper. Some questions I later realized after racing my braomns all night –needed me to graph the functions to get answers. Some answers I got even without knowing or solving –just plugging the choices into the fucntion and solving.

 

No wonder it was perhaps the toughest paper I have attempted so far. If it had not been for certain professional and personal pressures I would have takne it much after the Calculus exam I am planning to take coming Friday.

 

Indians never use a graphing calculator -do they? Ofcourse, even in US better test of analytical skills demands doing without the calculator. But thats called PreCal. with Analysis.

There is no calculator use in Calculus exam.

 

Those who take SAT2 exam for admission to MIT etc must use graphing calculator.No wonder few Indians get in at bachelors level.

 

Do they?

 

Umesh

 

Analogy:

I am as good at graphing calculator as a pony rider doing the trot (for power, exponential, log functions) and even full gallop for linear, quadratic and cubic functions –but this online one was like playing polo on an Arabian thoroughbred -with reins (keyboard) in the left hand and trying to shoot the ball in the goal with the stick (mouse) in right hand. And only 2 mins for each question.

 

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