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mathematics Expectations
For Entering First-Year Students

Students entering the School of Engineering and Applied Science must have a strong foundation in pre-calculus material in order to succeed in our mathematics courses. Below is a list of topics that you must know before entering the University of Virginia. All instructors in the School of Engineering and Applied Science will assume that you are familiar with these topics, and it should be expected that these topics will not be reviewed during class. We recommend “A Primer for Calculus” Sixth Edition by Leonard Holder as a good text from which to review this material. Any pre-Calculus mathematics text will contain this material.

Please keep in mind that you will be expected to do all of your mathematics without a calculator.

1. Radical and Fractional Exponents
2. Factoring
3. The Binomial Theorem
4. Completing the Square and the Quadratic Formula
5. Linear Inequalities
6. Equations of lines
7. Properties of Logarithms
8. The Trigonometric Functions
a) Graphs of the functions
b) Basic identities
c) the difference between radian measure and angles
d) The law of cosines
e) values of the trig functions at the special angles
9. Graphs of Basic Functions such as parabolas, and rational functions