Calculus I

Course Hours:
Section A: 11:30 a.m.-12:20 p.m. MWF, Olin 201

Section B: 1:00-1:50 p.m. MWF, Olin 201


Instructor: Tom Wright
Office: Olin 203
Office Hours: Mon. and Wed. 2:30-3:45, Tuesday 3-4:15, Thursday 2:30-3, and by appointment
email: wrighttj(at)wofford(dot)edu



Calculus is the study of change.  In this class, we will learn how the simple idea of a limit allowed us to create an entirely new branch of mathematics.


The goals of this course are


1.) To learn the basics of manipulating limits and derivatives           

2.) To understand the intuition behind derivatives and integrals

3.) To understand applications of calculus in the real world

TEXTBOOK: The textbook is online at  In order to view some of the figures, you will have to download and install the Wolfram CDFplayer on your computer. 

(Note: the textbook is free.  If you have paid for a textbook, you should probably return it.)

HOMEWORK: Homework will be assigned Wednesday or Thursday and due on the following Wednesday in class. It will be corrected and returned as quickly as possible. Homework will be accepted up to 48 hours late with a 30% penalty (although it may be the case that no credit is given for problems covered in class on Wednesday).  No homework will be accepted after 48 hours.


Homework will be given in two formats – problems from the book to be done on paper and Webassign problems to be done online.  Each problem from the book counts slightly more than (1.25 times as much as) a Webassign problem; however, there will likely be more Webassign problems.


EXAMS: All exams will be closed book. There will be two in-class midterm exams on October 5 and November 9. Makeup exams will be given only in exceptional circumstances (with valid documentation). The finals are on December 12 from 2-5 p.m. for Section A and December 13 from 2-5 p.m. for Section B.


GRADING: The final grade breakdown is as follows:
Homework - 25%
. Midterm Exams - 20% each (note that there are two of these)
. Final - 35%

ABSENCES: You will start the semester with three "Wellness Days" at your disposal to use as you see fit. A Wellness Day is the equivalent of an excusable absence provided that you notify me in advance that you will be missing class, or in the case of an emergency situation, you notify me within a reasonable time, usually within twenty-four hours of the end of class. (You may notify me by e-mail or by voicemail or in person. I will respond to e-mails within twenty-four hours. I will respond to voice-mails within twenty-four hours by sending an email. In the event that you do not receive a response from me, it is your responsibility to confirm that your notification was received.) Every absence beyond these three Wellness Days and any absence after which you fail to notify me that you will be missing class will lower your final course grade by three percentage points per absence. In the event that you will miss more than three days due to an extensive illness or another legitimate reason, you may see me to discuss how I will handle your special circumstances.

Students who will miss any class during the semester due to an official college event (such as an official athletic event or a non-athletic event approved by the Dean of the College) are required to speak to me as soon as possible in advance of the absence. Students are expected to bring me, in advance, a list of the dates of any anticipated absences; in the event of a change in the date of the event, you should notify me as soon as possible that you are unexpectedly missing class. Any student who expects to miss four or more days of class due to official college events must schedule an appointment with me to discuss this special circumstance.

Being more than five minutes late to a class counts as an absence.


Being caught texting in class constitutes half an absence.

MATHEMATICS DEPARTMENT WITHDRAWAL POLICY: The last day to drop or add this class is Friday, September 9. The last day to withdraw from this class is Friday, November 4. The official mathematics department withdrawal policy follows: if, at the time of request for withdrawal, your current cumulative grade is passing (D or better), you will be permitted to withdraw with a WP; if your current cumulative grade is failing, you will be assigned a grade of WF. Students who drop a course after the November 4 deadline will be assigned a WF. Students who drop the course at any time (but especially after November 4 with documentation of illness or personal circumstance receive a W; the decision to give a W is done by the Dean in charge of the Wellness Center, and documentation must be provided to her.  For information regarding the effect of the WF grade on the grade-point average, please refer to the Wofford College Catalogue available online at

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY: I have zero tolerance for academic dishonesty. Cheating of any kind will be prosecuted to the fullest extent in accordance with university policy.

STATEMENT OF THE HONOR CODE: "Because Wofford is committed to the moral as well as the intellectual growth of its students and staff, and because academic freedom and responsibility demand that members of the community embrace principles of good conduct, the college emphasizes personal integrity as its highest value. Dishonesty is especially destructive of the academic process. The Honor Code requires students to pledge honesty in their academic work and it sets forth appropriate responses to those who violate that pledge."

(Webpage URL is