Varsity Tutors can help you connect with skilled Precalculus tutors who can help you maximize your study efforts. Whether you are studying Precalculus in high school or college, working with a private instructor can help make this complicated subject more manageable. Continue reading to learn precisely what is covered in Precalculus classes, some of the skills a private instructor can help you with, how private sessions are different from typical classrooms, and how Varsity Tutors can help you get started with Precalculus tutoring quickly and easily.
What is Precalculus?
Precalculus is exactly what you'd expect based on the name; it's a course designed to prepare high school or college students for Calculus. The way this is accomplished may vary slightly between high school and college level courses, but the general information will remain the same.
Calculus is a branch of mathematics that studies change over time. Precalculus takes a student's prior experience with Geometry and Algebra and builds upon it to help them transition into Calculus. The two primary subject areas within a Precalculus course are Math Analysis and Trigonometry.
Math Analysis is sometimes labeled as Algebra 3. During this portion of the class, students focus on diving deeper into algebraic concepts. The Trigonometry portion of the course is essentially the study of triangles. It is the foundation of geometry and used extensively in fields such as astronomy, biology, navigation, oceanography, music theory, physical sciences, civil engineering, cartography, mechanical engineering, meteorology, and more.
What are some of the skills a Precalculus tutor can help me learn?
Although this is a course to get you ready for another class, don't think that means it will be easy. It is a combination of two different mathematical disciplines that helps students bridge a learning gap that stands between them and calculus studies. Because Precalculus does include two types of math, it can feel overwhelming to some students. This is especially true for those students who are not necessarily focused on mathematical studies but need calculus for their degree.
As part of your studies, you will be required to memorize large quantities of information. You will also need to call upon knowledge from previous courses. If you struggled in geometry or algebra previously and have any foundational knowledge gaps, a private Precalculus instructor could help you address these during your sessions.
Some of the algebra concepts your private instructor can help you with include domain and range, functions, and end behavior. While you will be reviewing how to tackle complicated equations, your Precalculus class will also teach you how to represent these equations graphically, verbally, and numerically. This is accomplished through the study of rational functions, logarithmic functions, polynomial functions, exponential functions, and the limitations of the various functions in expressing your findings. Whether you need extensive help with the algebra portion of your class or you need to review a few key concepts, sessions with a private Precalculus instructor can give you the support you need to work on your specific learning goals.
As part of your trigonometry studies, you may need to work with your personal instructor on developing your understanding of inverse trigonometric functions, solving basic and advanced sinusoidal equations, trigonometric angle addition identities, solving sinusoidal models, Polar, and Complex Coordinate systems, and using trigonometric identities to solve problems.
Other topics you may need to review with your Precalculus tutor include conic sections, vectors, matrices, complex numbers, probability and combinatorics, and various series and sequences.
In addition to helping you review specific concepts and skills, Precalculus tutors can also help you maximize your study efforts in preparation of a chapter or end of year exam. Precalculus sessions may be useful for students who are facing high-stakes standardized exams such as the SAT or ACT.
Private instruction can help you with all of your precalculus studies, which is why so many high performing students leverage individualized instruction as part of their academic strategy. Not only can they help you review key concepts and prepare for tests, but they can also work with you to develop your independent study skills. This may include note-taking strategies, time management techniques, and general test-taking tips that can help you maximize your educational efforts even after your sessions have ended.
How is Precalculus tutoring different from taking a class?
When you take a typical Precalculus course, you will be surrounded by many other students who are all depending on a single teacher to provide the educational content of the course and any additional academic support each student may require. When you add in lesson planning and grading tests, that's a lot for one teacher to accomplish. It's no surprise that the personalization component can become lost in the mix.
When you work independently with a professional Precalculus tutor, you are the only student they are working with during your study session. This gives them the time to focus on getting to know you, your learning style, your academic strengths and weaknesses, and even your educational goals. This is the kind of information that is critical for developing genuinely personalized learning experiences. Your private instructor can take what they discover about you and customize a learning plan that focuses on the precise subject area content you need the most help with. Whether this is critical concepts from previous classes that you didn't quite master or explaining brand new concepts introduced during your Precalculus class, a personal instructor can work with you at your level and on your time table.
In a typical classroom setting, you may have noticed that every day is relatively similar to the day before. This is especially true in most math classes. The teacher tends to introduce new content visually via a whiteboard, powerpoint, or overhead projector while discussing it. Students are expected to take notes to study between sessions and help them complete any homework assignments. While this is a generally effective instructional model, it does not take into account the different ways in which students learn or what happens if a student begins to struggle with the new information.
When you work with a private instructor, they can tailor their delivery of the material to your learning style. This could mean practical examples, more in-depth discussion, working through a variety of sample problems, or spending time answering your specific questions. One of the most significant differences between the way students are taught in a classroom and in private instructional sessions is this level of personalized instruction, which is difficult to achieve in a regular classroom.
Another crucial difference between private instruction and classes is how they are scheduled. A class is scheduled based on the needs and staffing availability of a school. You must fit the classes you need together like puzzle pieces and then plan your work, personal, family, and study time around those pieces. When you work with a private instructor, you have more personal freedom. You can schedule sessions during the week and on weekends during regular business hours as well as early mornings and later in the evening.
Whether you need help preparing for an exam or ongoing academic support as you make your way through your Precalculus course, private instructional sessions can help you work towards your learning goals.
How can I get started with Precalculus tutoring?
Varsity Tutors makes it easy to connect with experienced Precalculus tutors in person or online via our Live Learning Platform. Regardless of whether you decide to work with an instructor remotely or in person, you will receive all of the benefits of personalized instruction discussed previously.
Each format allows you to work with Precalculus tutors face-to-face. In person, sessions can be held in your home, at a nearby coffee shop, a local library, or any other convenient public venue. When working with an instructor remotely, you can meet from anywhere as long as you have your digital device and a reliable internet connection. When you log in to the Live Learning Platform, you will see your instructor as if they were sitting across from you. You can see and hear them and receive the same type of real-time feedback and personalized instruction, as you would if they were sitting next to you.
The most significant difference between in person and online sessions is convenience. Precalculus is a challenging subject to take, and it takes a certain level of experience and subject area mastery to teach. Finding these components in someone local is possible, but their availability may be limited. You can dramatically increase the pool of private instructors from which you can choose when you are willing to work with someone remotely. It can be easier to meet with a tutor during popular session times, such as before and after school, when you work with someone who is in a different time zone.
You deserve the academic support a professional Precalculus tutor can provide. If you're ready to get started with private Precalculus sessions, contact Varsity Tutors today to be connected with skilled instructors who can help you work towards your academic goals.