What is Intermediate Algebra?

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There cannot be an exact answer to this question, unless the curriculum at all of the colleges in Maryland is standardized. Since this is not a practical, nor a desirable objective, a less precise definition will have to suffice. First of all, to answer this question, it was felt that a comparison between Introductory Algebra and Intermediate Algebra is necessary. Secondly, it is recognized that Intermediate Algebra is ideally a level of mathematical maturity, that can be achieved though a variety of topics and skills. Finally, Intermediate Algebra is not static; it is changing and evolving along with the technology available to teach mathematics. Although we will not give a precise definition of Intermediate Algebra here, we hope that once you have perused this document, you will be able to recognize Intermediate Algebra when you see it.

It is felt that a comparison of Introductory Algebra and Intermediate Algebra is necessary, because some topics found in Intermediate Algebra at one college may be found in Introductory Algebra at another college. Intermediate Algebra comes at the end of the sequence of developmental math courses. It is this sequence of courses that is, in reality, the true prerequisite to “College Level” mathematics courses; therefore, it is not important in which developmental course individual topics appear. Intermediate Algebra should be thought of as a level of mathematical maturity. It is a combination of computational skills, manipulative skills and critical thinking skills needed to “think” mathematically. These skills can be achieved through a variety of topics and pedagogical techniques. Download free What is Intermediate Algebra?.pdf here

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