I wanted to ask these questions here, feeling that this place place is without doubt is better than anywhere else, feeling hesitant and shy to ask such question.

For several reasons, the environment which I live in doesn't encourage the learning of natural sciences, it permits it but doesn't put efforts in teaching it.

As a result I missed a great deal of exciting things as I went to college which show me the several weak points I developed through the years.

Being taught by other people who came from different locations, environments cultures.

I could see the huge contrast.

Feeling the pain of such experience, I decided to relearn everything form scratch.

Beginning from basics of math.

Now that I'm studying in college Computer Information Systems, I have some college level Math courses (Calc 1, Calc 2, Discrete Math, Linear algebra and some other courses like QA). And I am delaying them to prepare myself to accomplish basic courses like algebra1, algebra2, Geometry, College algebra,Trignometry.

When I think about it. I found that I don't have the time (though I enjoy them+ feeling pain that I missed learning them properly) to do like all these algebra courses in a short time.

The question is:

  • Is it ok just to take a quick review algebra 1,2 using (cliffs notes) then study this college algebra book College Algebra and Trigonometry or should I finish algebra 1 then jump into this book, as I find algebra one some how very easy!

    I actually want to shorten the time to focus on geometry, so I guess learning geometry prepares me for trignometry and learning algebra 1 (at least) prepares me for college algebra which leads to higher mathematics.

Thank you for your time.

  • $\begingroup$ @user 4272: When you say you "have some college level Math courses (Calc 1, Calc 2,...", you are talking about the ones you have to take, or ones you have already taken at some point? $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 1, 2010 at 5:22
  • $\begingroup$ For computer information systems you probably need no geometry or trigonometry, except for calculus if they for some reason force you take it. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 1, 2010 at 5:38
  • $\begingroup$ yes they force it actually and i need to have a foundation a bit in these. $\endgroup$
    – user4272
    Commented Dec 1, 2010 at 9:01

2 Answers 2


You will need some geometry for calculus. You should be able to teach yourself everything you need to know in terms of geometry within 1 month max, I would say if you work hard 2-3 weeks is a realistic timeframe. You really need a solid foundation in algebra if you need to take calc 1 and calc 2 though.

I would recommend taking some sort of algebra class but not more than one. Alternatively, if you are disciplined, you can self-teach yourself, but this is not quite as good in my opinion. I'm in my 2nd year of math/computer science joint program and my math classes are making my computer science courses a breeze. In my (biased) opinion a solid foundation in math will REALLY help you.

Best of luck.

  • $\begingroup$ thank you very much sir for your optimistic response, i should then use the schaum's outlines books for algebra1&2 and geometry in between. after that i'll jumb in college algebra to prepare me for cal1&2 and higher math courses.Thanks again for the reassurance. $\endgroup$
    – user4272
    Commented Dec 1, 2010 at 8:56

Repeating a bit of what Cplayer has suggested. I would say that maybe 2-3 months of non vigorous study of Algebra I will be suffice enough for starters. The next move I would suggest is taking a College Algebra course which is like taking a pre-calculus course just with no trigonometry in it. From here I would say some self study of trigonometry properties and relationships (like a table) and the unit circle (really hone in on the unit circle) would be enough to get you going into Calculus I. Calculus I for me did not deal to much with graphs of sine, cosine, and tangents. More so what are the values at certain angles (unit circle again). That is what a lot of the trigonometry and pre-calculus course will probably cover which you do not need every tad bit of that information for Calculus I. I would say a few weeks of getting familiarized with the trig properties and basic graphs (sine and cosine) and then that should get you quite prepared for your Calculus course. I would say really hone in on your Calculus I material because you will need to use it for Calculus II. Again, not everything but the key topics of interest would be: differentiation, integration, along with algebra skills and you from there you will learn how to apply these techniques to solve another phenomena in Calculus II.

I hope that this will help out with some guidance.

Good Luck and happy studying. :)


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