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Thread: Level of calculus needed?

  1. #1
    Actuary.com - Level I Poster
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    Level of calculus needed?

    Can anyone tell me exactly how much calculus I would need to know to pass these exams? It has been a while since I have taken calculus or probability for that matter. Do any of you think it is possible to strictly study from the recommended self study guides or would it be better to actually take a calculus refresher course, a probability refresher course, and go that route?

  2. #2
    Actuary.com - Level III Poster
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    I've heard through multivariate (usually three semesters) but don't quote me on that. I know you need multiple integration for the derivation of some formulae, and it's extremely important in conjunction with integration techniques for joint density functions (dependent variables) and moment generating functions where one variable is a function of another.

  3. #3
    Actuary.com - Level I Poster
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    i posted this on the exam P board, but i think it may help out.

    when i took exam p, it had been about4 years since i had taken calculus. i failed exam p miserably the first time i took it (got a 3!). the reason was that when i was studying for the test, i didnt do a thorough review of calculus. for the Sept 2005 sitting i reviewed my entire calculus textbook ( i skipped some selected parts that i knew would not be tested)and i wrote down all of the important things to remember (only filled about 4 pages) before i started doing practice exams and it helped a ton. i passed exam p with grade 10. i jumped 7 points primarily because i went in with calculus fresh in my mind.
    things from calculus that you need to know:
    l'hospital's rule
    chain rule differentiation and integration
    integration by parts
    infinite series (geometric series, p-series, alternating series,...)
    partial fractions
    trigonometric substitution
    differentiation and integration of transcedental functions
    change of variables in integration
    partial differentiation

    of course, you must have a strong command of basic limits, differentiation and integration to tackle some of the concepts i listed above.

  4. #4
    Actuary.com - Level II Poster
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    I think that self-study is a possibility for you, scine20. I think that you would do fine with just study manuals. I used Actex and liked it a lot for P. When I took the exam, I hadn't seen calculus in about 2 years. I didn't know any multivariable differential calculus, but I had multivariable integral. I was able to pick up differential using the Actex study manual. I think that you should get an exam study guide and have a calculus book on the desk next to you in case there are things that you need help on.

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