Mini Syllabus

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Course ID: MAT187
Title: Precalculus
Modality: Internet
Credit Hours: 5.00

Course Section Information

Institution: Rio Salado College

Section: 10387

Term: Fall 2014

Course Materials

Be sure that you have all the necessary materials prior to the start date of your course.

Media and Technology

Computer with minimum specifications:

MyMathLab System Requirements
Note: TestGen® Plug-in IS required.

Calculator: Texas Instruments model TI-83, 83 Plus, 84 or 84 Plus, is strongly recommended. A link to a tutorial for using the graphing calculator can be found on the Tools for Success page in the left menu bar in MyMathLab.

Note: Calculators with symbolic manipulating capabilities, or CAS, such as TI-89, TI-92 or TI-Nspire CAS are not allowed on exams.

Textbook required for Course:

Title: Precalculus (Bundled w/MyMathLab access code)
Author: Beecher/Penna/Bittinger
ISBN: 9781269634694

Note: The textbook must be purchased through the Rio Salado bookstore where it is bundled with the MyMathLab access code. The MyMathLab access code is required to take this course.

Rio Salado College has developed a unique Textbook Savings Program that uses customized textbooks and saves students up to 50% off the original price of textbooks. This textbook is included in the Textbook Savings Program and has been customized specifically for this course at Rio Salado College by Pearson Custom Publishing so that it contains information most relevant to the course. Your course materials are available through the Rio Salado College Bookstore.  All materials should be verified by ISBN before purchasing at the Rio Salado Bookstore or from another seller.

Course Description and Competencies

Official Course Description
A precalculus course combining topics from college algebra and trigonometry. Preparation for analytic geometry and calculus.
Official Course Prerequisites
Grade of B or better in MAT120, or MAT121, or MAT122, or equivalent, or satisfactory score on district placement exam.
Course Note
Strongly recommended that students have some knowledge of trigonometry. Students may receive credit for only one of the following: MAT150, MAT151, MAT152, or MAT187.
Official Course Competencies
  1. Find real and complex zeros of polynomial functions.
  2. Calculate and interpret average rate of change.
  3. Determine the inverse of a relation when represented numerically, analytically, or graphically.
  4. Analyze and interpret the behavior of functions, including domain and range, end behavior, increasing and decreasing intervals, extrema, asymptotic behavior, and symmetry.
  5. Determine whether a function is one-to-one when represented numerically, analytically, or graphically.
  6. Determine whether a relation is a function when represented numerically, analytically, or graphically.
  7. Graph polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, power, absolute value, piecewise-defined, and trigonometric functions.
  8. Perform operations, including compositions, on functions and state the domain of the resulting function.
  9. Solve polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric equations analytically and graphically.
  10. Use transformations to graph functions.
  11. Communicate process and results in written and verbal format.
  12. Compare alternative solution strategies.
  13. Justify and interpret solutions to application problems.
  14. Model and solve real-world problems.
  15. Read and interpret quantitative information when presented numerically, analytically, or graphically.
  16. Find and evaluate inverse trigonometric functions.
  17. Use the definition and properties of trigonometric functions and formulas to solve application problems.
  18. Verify trigonometric identities.

Course Requirements

  1. You must complete all assignments in the course to be eligible to get a passing grade.
  2. Examinations: There are two examinations (a midterm and a final). You must take both of them in person.  You can contact the Testing Center for location and hours. It is strongly recommended that you do all the reviews prior to the midterm and final.  See the Exams section below for more information on taking your Midterm and Final exams.
  3. Note: You must earn a combined average of 60% on the midterm and final exams in order to pass the course.

*A note about tests and homework: You may use your first attempt at a chapter test either as a pre-test or as your test for a grade. If you choose to use it as a pre-test, your homework will become available and will be automatically adjusted to reflect those areas where you need practice. However, remember that the homework itself carries no point value. Once you have completed the homework with the minimum target value of 70%, the test re-takes will become available to you.

Time Requirements

Remember that this is a five credit-hour class. As such, you will need to dedicate significant time to this course. Plan to spend at least five hours on course content and at least ten hours on homework for a total of at least fifteen hours each week. Be prepared to double your weekly class and study time if you choose an accelerated calendar.

Grading Procedure and Scale

Grading Procedure

Letter grades for examinations and the course will be determined by the following criteria:

11 online chapter tests 880 points (80 points each)
Midterm Exam 1760 points
Final Exam 1760 points
Total Points Possible 4,400 points

Grading Scale

The final course grades will be determined by the following scale:

Grade Determination
Grade Points Percentage
A 3938 - 4400 points 90%-100%
B 3498 - 3937 points 80%-89%
C 3058 - 3497 points 70%-79%
D 2618 - 3057 points 60%-69%
F 0 - 2617 points 0%-59%

Please Note: The grading procedure for this course is based on the total number of points possible.

The grading scale is administered equally to all students in the course. Do not expect to receive a grade higher than that earned by your total points. There will be no point adjustments made for such things as "class participation" or other subjective factors.

Extra credit is not available for this course.


This course contains in-person exams which must be completed at an approved testing site. Students who live within Maricopa county please see Midterm and Final Exam Information for Rio Salado testing sites and hours of operation.

Students who live outside of Maricopa county or are registered with Disability Resources and Services must request to have exams proctored by submitting the Proctored Test Request Form during the first two weeks of class. This form and additional information regarding proctoring and proctoring services may be found here.

Contact the Testing Center at (480) 517-8560 or (866) 517-8560 (Toll-Free) with any questions.

Final Grade Options

  • Letter grade (A, B, C, D, F) - awarded if the student completes all work, including the final exams.
  • Extension - Students may request an extension because of illness or other extenuating circumstances, if they have been doing acceptable work. The instructor will define the requirements and timelines to complete the course. Please Note: Instructors are not obligated to give extensions.
  • Withdrawal - Students may submit a withdrawal request on or prior to the “Last Date to Withdraw” indicated in their RioLearn Gradebook.  

    Students should not contact their instructor to request a withdrawal. A student wishing to withdraw from a class within the stated timeline must do so by visiting In extreme circumstances, students do have the option of requesting a complete withdrawal from the college by providing Student Enrollment Services with appropriate documentation.

  • Credit/No Credit Option (P/Z) - This course may not be taken on a credit/no credit basis.

Late or Missing Assignments

Assignments that have due dates are due on time according to the due dates in your gradebook. If you need to request an extension for an assignment, a request must be made to your instructor via RioLearn at least one week prior to the due date. You can request a due date change from the "Modify Due Dates" button in the "Due Dates" tab of your RioLearn Gradebook.

Late points may be applied at the instructor's discretion.

Submitting Assignments

All assignments, except the Midterm and Final, are located in MyMathLab.

Note to students: Keep a record of everything that you submit.

Course Completion Policy

A student who registers for a Distance Learning course is assigned a "start date" and an "end date." It is the student's responsibility to note due dates for assignments and to keep up with the course work.

If a student falls behind, she/he must contact the instructor and request an extension of her/his end date in order to complete the course.

It is the prerogative of the instructor to decide whether or not to grant the request.

Copyright Acknowledgements

Some images used in courses are licensed as follows: Accunet/AP Multimedia Archive,,, EBSCO Image Collection, ARTstor Image Collection.

Library Services

The Rio Salado Library is committed to student success and provides a variety of materials and services to enhance student learning.  Utilizing Rio’s online library for your research is the best way to ensure that your sources are validated, authoritative, and appropriate for college-level coursework. Librarians are available to help you at all times via our Ask a Librarian live chat service. Also, the How Do I..? Streaming Video Series provides instruction on how to use the online library to find books, articles, ebooks, streaming films, and more.

Please note that when library materials (e.g., articles, ebooks, and streaming media) are integrated into your lesson content, you will see the notation “…provided to you through the Rio Salado Library.

Academic Misconduct

Academic Misconduct includes cheating, conspiring to cheat, soliciting to cheat, attempting to cheat, plagiarism, fabrication on an assignment, or other forms of dishonest presentation.

Posting assessments on an unauthorized web site, soliciting assessment answers and the unauthorized acquisition of assessments, assessment answers, or other academic material is cheating.

Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to, the use of paraphrase or direct quotation of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment.  It also includes the unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling or sharing of term papers or other academic materials.  Information gathered from the Internet and not properly identified is also considered plagiarism.

We expect every student to produce his/her original, independent work. Any student whose work indicates a violation of the MCCCD Academic Misconduct Policy (including cheating and plagiarism) can expect sanctions as specified in the college catalog.

Rio Salado College uses software that uncovers plagiarism from student to student and other data sources on the Internet. If a student is found to have plagiarized content, grade consequences will be applied in accordance with departmental policies.

Civility Policy

The faculty of Rio Salado place a high value on the importance of general ethical standards of academic behavior and expect that communication between students and instructors or among students shall maintain the level of formality and mutual respect appropriate to any college teaching/learning situation.

Language or behavior that is rude, abusive, profane, disruptive, or threatening will not be tolerated. Activity of this type is Academic Misconduct as defined in MCCCD Policy AR 2.3.11. Students engaging in such behavior will be removed from the course with a failing grade. Additional sanctions may be applied pursuant to AR 2.3.11.

Requirement for Active Class Participation

Please note that students may be withdrawn from class for non-participation.

If you receive financial aid of any kind, it is your responsibility to protect your eligibility to receive financial aid by meeting the active participation requirements of this class.

Change of Address

Please notify Course Support at (480) 517-8243 or 1-800-729-1197 or by email at Please include your name, student number, phone number, and new address including city, state, and zip code.

Disability Statement

Rio Salado provides reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities. Please contact Disability Services at (480) 517-8562 or


Course content may vary from this outline to meet the needs of this particular group.

Rio Salado College Copyright

Course Content © Copyright 2014 Rio Salado College. All Rights Reserved.

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