# About to start calculus with shaky foundation...?

Question:This fall I'm going to be taking a calculus course at school, but the past two years math has been a problematic subject for me and I worry that every concept I passed over in geometry, algebra and trigonometry will set me back as I attempt to learn calculus.

How would one best go about self-teaching a field as broad as mathematics? Even if I can't put myself in good stead before the fall, I would still like to teach myself some of the concepts that I hadn't previously mastered.

P.S. I would especially appreciate advise from those who have undertaken a similar "self-study" approach.

You know, I just took Calc I at college, while the last proper math class I had was nearly 10 years ago in 9th grade (very poor grasp of trig and geometry and basic stuff like fractions).

But you know, I came into it with more maturity and patience and it really came naturally for me. You don't need to UNDERSTAND a lot of foundational concepts to apply calculus. Just don't get caught up in all the equations and notation and strive to understand the concept and what it does (i.e. if you understand what a derivative represents, you'll have a much easier time solving derivatives!).

On that that, confidence in your own ability to succeed is key. If your confidence isn't where it needs to be, grab a Schuam's Outline on Pre-calc and build up some confidence solving those problems (use the book in conjuction with Google).

Good luck!
IMO, most people do poorly in calc because they have a weak foundation in basic algebra. Calc itself is not difficult but becomes a nightmare when you can't even do the basic algebraic manipulations.
I am not currently doing in but I felt in the same way when I took my first calculus...I felt I was not quite ready, so I went to the library, got some books and started practicing. I contacted my tutor and he help me a lot. There are a lot of website with exercises that can help you. You can find them in the back of the calculus books.Good luck
I got a D in Alegra 1 two times

My friend at UCLA gave me his Caculus book and I read the chapter and got the answer ALMOST right. All I did wrong was put the decimal point in the wrong place.

SO, it can't be that hard!