AP Calculus AB and BC
Love it or hate it, math is a tool utilized far beyond classroom doors and can be applied in a wide variety of fields. Advanced Placement (AP) Calculus AB and BC are the highest level math classes available, and many seniors elect to take these college-level APs as their final math course in high school.
Senior Sally Liao, who took AP Calculus BC in her junior year, emphasized the importance of using in-class time efficiently and not shirking practice work for calculus. “It’s harder to catch up on the material covered in calculus because it is more conceptual, so a combination of paying attention in class and doing the given material helped me,” Liao said.
Teacher Michael Bautista, who has been teaching for 16 years and taught Calculus AB classes for 13 of them, offered his advice for achieving success in the class. Although the concepts of calculus can be complex, Bautista recommends that students should look back to the fundamental math skills they’ve learned, such as graphing and solving equations, as starting points to understanding the material. “Questions require you to synthesize material from a lot of math that you’ve taken in the past,” Bautista said.
While taking calculus and post-secondary math courses, Bautista emphasized the importance of developing math skills through practice. He believes that completing the course materials and getting adequate practice makes it easier to understand the content, rather than simply knowing the formulas. “You start seeing more depth in the math the more that you do it,” Bautista said. “If you continue with the course, you might start to develop understanding of the material later in your education.”