Calculus for Business Analysis

Math 120
Spring 2011
Schedule Number: 30093
Meeting: TuTh, 8:00-9:15.
GMCS 301
San Diego State University

Final Exam: 1:00, Sat. May 14, Room EBA 439.

Professor: Mike O'Sullivan
Office: GMCS #579, ext. 594-6697
Office Hours: TuTh: 11:00-12:00, Th: 2:00-3:00.
Most of TuWTh afternoons I will be in my office and available.
                              Other times: by appointment.

Text and Course materials

Syllabus: The course will closely follow the course syllabus designed by Corey Manchester available at his SDSU Math 120 website. You will find his syllabus, several handouts, and practice exams there.

Text: SDSU custom textbook containing chapters from M. Sullivan, Mathematics: An Applied Approach, 8th edition, Wiley; and M. Sullivan, Finite Mathematics 10th edition, Wiley. The book is available in the bookstore, but you may also just use the online version.

Detailed Information

REVIEW SHEETS:    First Exam,

Wiley Website: This course textbook is available at the bookstore, but may also be accessed online. The homework is all online; use our class website on Wiley You will have to register at this website with an access code. If you buy a hard copy in the bookstore you will receive an access code, otherwise, you can purchase it when you register at the website above.

Calculator: You must have a scientific calculator (not a cell phone version!). Your objective is to understand the concepts of calculus as applied to business and economics; the calculator is a tool to help with that goal, not a substitute for understanding.

Course Description

This course includes a lot of mathematical topics, in particular calculus, and the focus is applications in business and economics. We start with a review of graphs of functions: from lines, to polynomial functions and rational functions and finally, logarithmic and exponential functions. A good understanding of this material is essential (essential!!!!) to understanding calculus. The central portion of the course is calculus, which has two distinct components: the derivative and the integral. The derivative is used to measure instantaneous change (like the rate at which prices increase with time). The integral is used to sum up a quantity over time (like how much oil is withdrawn from a well over a 2 year period). In the final weeks of the course we will study some mathematical problems in finance.


We will have two midterms and a final exam. Homework assignments are at the Wiley website. All scores are combined into the final grade. (I may also have several short quizes during the semester: these may be worth up to 10%, the exams would then be worth 20% each).

Point value for the work will be as follows.
Wiley online homeworks 20%
Exam 1 25%
Exam 2 25%
Final Exam 30%

Final Grade: Base on a standard scale, 90%+ is an A, 80%-90% is a B, %70-80% is a C, 60%-70% is a D.

Cheat Sheet: You may bring one 8.5 by 11 inch cheet sheet of notes. This should be for quick reference and reminder. You wont have time to read it carefully during the exam.

Blackboard: Grades will be posted on blackboard.

Disabilities: If you have a disability that I should be aware of, please contact me early in the course. In particular, if you will take exams through Disabled Student Services, I should know right away.