Math 42 Autumn 2014

Math 42 Exam Information

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Exam Policies

All exams for Math 42 are closed-book, closed-notes, with no calculators or other electronic aids permitted. Each midterm counts approximately 26% toward your final grade, and the final exam counts approximately 38%. (Your overall exam average is the sum of all points earned on all exams, divided by the total possible points; this average counts 90% toward the final grade. No scaling or curving is applied to individual exam scores.)

If you have a course-related or competition-related schedule conflict with a midterm exam, you must at least a week in advance of the exam to make arrangements for an alternate (early) sitting; the same policy holds for OAE accomodations. No other schedule conflicts are accommodated for midterms, and alternate exam times are limited. The date and time of the final exam are set by the University; all students must take the exam at this time.

There is a regrade process after each midterm exam to address possible grading issues on individual problems. Compose a letter clearly explaining why the particular problem merited more points, and turn it into your TA no more than two weeks after the official exam date. (Once submitted, any part of the exam may be regraded.) The submission deadlines are firm, and no exceptions will be made, so please go over your exam, alongside the posted solutions (see below), in a timely manner.

Pre-exam Advice and Information

  • Read Jessica Purcell's Tips for Success in Undergraduate Math Courses for good advice about how to study for a math exam.
  • Look at the homework and solutions -- and remember the answers to odd-numbered problems in the back of the book.
  • See below for practice exams. In addition, this course is cumulative, so you should go over the solutions to any exams already held this quarter in preparation for the next one.
  • We highly recommend the Concept Check, True-False Quiz, and Review Exercises at the end of each chapter. The solutions to all of these Chapter Review problems are posted here.

Practice Exam Questions

The following exam questions were used in previous incarnations of Math 42. Material covered for a given midterm in these classes does not necessarily correlate exactly to the material covered in Math 42 this quarter, so bear this in mind when working these examples. (For instance, the topic of improper integrals appears on some years' first midterms, and on other years' second midterms.)

Warning: Do not look at or print out the solutions to the practice problems below until after working on them yourself, taking some time, and going back later to try any problems you couldn't do the first time again. Doing the problems while looking at the answers renders them almost completely useless as preparation for taking an exam. Remember that the teaching staff are available to ask questions of regarding any of the review material.

Questions from Previous Midterm Exams


Previous Final Exams

(these emphasize differential equations but include "grab bag" questions from other topics)

Course Exams and Statistics

After each exam this quarter, you will be able to find solutions here, as well as information on the coursewide distribution of scores.

Exam 1: Thursday, October 16, 2014, 7:30-9:30pm     Solutions     Grade Distribution

The top quarter of the class scored more than 54 points (out of 78), the median score was 41, and the bottom quarter of the class scored 32 points (out of 78) or below. The mean score was 42.7 points out of 78, with a standard deviation of 15.4 points. (See the histogram linked above for a more detailed view of where your score stands.)

Although letter grades are not given for individual exams, if the final grade were to be based on this exam alone, the B/A cutoff would be at approximately 49/50 points (out of 78), the C/B cutoff would be at approximately 35/36 points, and the lowest C-minus would be approximately 22 out of 78.

Exam 2: Thursday, November 6, 2014, 7:30-9:30pm
Final Exam: Monday, December 8, 2014, 7-10pm

Autumn 2014 -- Department of Mathematics, Stanford University