MAT 17A: Calculus for Biology and Medicine
Winter 2019

Instructor: José Simental Rodríguez. josesr AT
Lecture: MWF 5:10-6pm, Rock Hall. Office hours: MWF 4-5pm and by appointment, 2147 MSB.

Textbook: (Strongly recommended but NOT required) "Calculus for Biology and Medicine" by Claudia Neuhauser, third edition.
Inclusive Access: To access the textbook via the UC Davis Inclusive Access Program, go to and log-in with your UCD credentials. Please note that:

Teaching assistants:
Lead TA. Will Wright. willwright AT
B04, B07. Ye He. leohe AT
B02, B03. Graham Hawkes. hawkes AT
B05. Carter Johnson. caljohnson AT
B06, B08. Qianhui Wan. qhswan AT
B01. Nathaniel Gallup. npgallup AT


We will closely follow the department syllabus, which is here.

Weekly schedule

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
9am – 4pm
4pm – 5pm Office hours Office hours
N. Gallup
Office hours
5pm – 6pm
Rock Hall
Rock Hall
BAINER 1130/HGYM 290
Ye He/C. Johnson
Rock Hall
6pm – 7pm
CHEM 166/BAINER 1130
G. Hawkes/Ye He
7pm – 8pm
CHEM 166/BAINER 1132
G. Hawkes/Q. Wan
8pm – 9pm
CHEM 166
Q. Wan

Calculus Room

A very helpful resource for this class is the Calculus Room, 1317 Earth and Sciences Bulding. There you can find help with things relating to the course, including Webwork. Please see for more details.


Your grade will be determined as follows:
Homework – 10%
Discussion sheets – 10%
Midterms – 40% (20% each)
Final – 40%

And your letter grade will be determined according to the following table:
A+ A A– B+ B B– C+ C C– D+ D D– F
[100, ∞) [93, 100) [90, 93) [88,90) [83, 88) [80, 83) [78, 80) [73, 78) [70, 73) [68, 70) [63, 68) [60, 63) [0, 60)


There will be weekly homework, due Mondays on WebWork.


There will be weekly discussion meetings with your corresponding TA. You will work on the exercise discussion sheet in groups of 4. Unless otherwise indicated, you will hand in one solution per group the following Thursday. The solutions will be graded.

In order for your grade to be recorded correctly, you have to go to the discussion session you are assigned to.

Please bring your laptop to discussion, as we will be using the programming language R to plot graphs and visualize data.
Download R from and download R studio from . Alternatively, you could also use the in-browser application at (click "Sign up with Google" and log in with your UC Davis credentials)

Instructions for downloading R/R studio on PC.
Instructions for downloading R/R studio on Mac.


There will be two midterms, during the fourth and eighth weeks of the quarter. The exact dates are to be determined. You will receive at least two weeks notice before each midterm. In case a university sanctioned excuse (with proof, such as a doctor's note) causes the student to miss one of the midterm exams, the other midterm will be worth 40% of the final grade. No notes or books are allowed in any exam. A scientific calculator is ok, but a graphing calculator is not.

  1. Midterm 1 will take place on Friday, Feb. 1 in class. Find practice problems here.   Solutions. . For your records, Midterm 1 is here and here is the key.
  2. Midterm 2 will take place on Friday, March 1 in class. Find practice problems here.   Solutions. For your records, Midterm 2 is here, and here is the key.

Final exam

The final exam will be on Tuesday, March 19, 3:30 – 5:30pm in California Hall . Please bring your student ID to the final, or you will not be admitted into the exam room.

Please find a list of practice problems for the final exam here. The solutions are here. (In number 7, ignore the concavity part.)

We will have a review session on Monday, March 18, 3:30 – 5:30pm in Wellman 234.

Math Placement Exam

All students enrolling in MAT 17A are required to pass the Math Placement Exam with an overall score of at least 30 AND a trig score of at least 2.
All students who have not met this requirement will be ADMINISTRATIVELY DROPPED from the class.
For more information on the Math Placement Exam, see

Students with disabilities

Any student with a documented disability who needs to arrange reasonable accommoda- tions must contact the Student Disability Center, 54 Cowell Building. Faculty are authorized to provide only accommodations requested by the SDC. If you have any questions, please contact the SDC at 530-752-3184, or sdc AT

Academic Honesty

Cheating will not be tolerated, under any circumstances. Every incident will be reported, and will result in a score of zero for the test or a failing grade for the course.