**ERIC Number:**EJ1178090

**Record Type:**Journal

**Publication Date:**2018

**Pages:**38

**Abstractor:**As Provided

**ISBN:**N/A

**ISSN:**ISSN-0021-8251

**EISSN:**N/A

The Path to College Calculus: The Impact of High School Mathematics Coursework

Sadler, Philip; Sonnert, Gerhard

Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, v49 n3 p292-329 May 2018

This study addresses a longstanding question among high school mathematics teachers and college mathematics professors: Which is the best preparation for college calculus-- (a) a high level of mastery of mathematics considered preparatory for calculus (algebra, geometry, precalculus) or (b) taking calculus itself in high school? We used a data set of 6,207 students of 216 professors at 133 randomly selected U.S. colleges and universities, and hierarchical models controlled for differences in demography and background. Mastery of the mathematics considered preparatory for calculus was found to have more than double the impact of taking a high school calculus course on students' later performance in college calculus, on average. However, students with weaker mathematics preparation gained the most from taking high school calculus.

Descriptors: Secondary School Mathematics, High School Students, Mathematics Instruction, Calculus, College Mathematics, Secondary School Teachers, Mathematics Teachers, College Faculty, College Preparation, Transitional Programs, Hierarchical Linear Modeling, Student Placement, Advanced Placement, Algebra, Geometry, College Readiness, College Students, Surveys, Student Characteristics, Demography, College Entrance Examinations

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. 1906 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191. Tel: 800-235-7566; Tel: 703-620-9840; Fax: 703-476-2570; e-mail: NCTM@nctm.org; Web site: http://www.nctm.org/publications/journal-for-research-in-mathematics-education

**Publication Type:**Journal Articles; Reports - Research

**Education Level:**Secondary Education

**Audience:**N/A

**Language:**English

**Sponsor:**National Science Foundation (NSF)

**Authoring Institution:**N/A

**Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys:**ACT Assessment; SAT (College Admission Test)

**Grant or Contract Numbers:**0813702