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College Algebra, Third Edition


Author: Robert F. Blitzer

Publisher: Prentice Hall


Publish Date: February 18, 2003

ISBN-10: 131013653

Pages: 816

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

I’ve written College Algebra, Third Edition, to help diverse students, with different backgrounds and future goals, to succeed. The book has three fundamental goals:

1.    To help students acquire a solid foundation in algebra, preparing them for other courses such as calculus, business calculus, and finite mathematics.
2.    To show students how algebra can model and solve authentic real-world problems.
3.    To enable students to develop problem-solving skills, while fostering critical thinking, within an interesting setting.

One major obstacle in the way of achieving these goals is the fact that very few students actually read their textbook. This has been a regular source of frustration for me and my colleagues in the classroom. Anectodal evidence gathered over years highlights two basic reasons that students do not take advantage of their textbook:

•    “I’ll never use this information.”
•    “I can’t follow the explanations.”

As a result, I’ve written every page of this book with the intent of eliminating these two objections. See the book’s Walkthrough, beginning on page xiv, for the ideas and tools I’ve used to do so.

A Brief Note on Technology

Technology, and specifically the use of a graphing utility, is covered thoroughly, although its coverage by an instructor is optional. If you require the use of a graphing utility in the course, you will find support for this approach, particularly in the wide selection of clearly designated technology exercises in each exercise set If you wish to minimize or eliminate the discussion or use of a graphing utility, the book is written to enable you to do so. Regardless of the role technology plays in your course, the technology boxes with TI-83 screens that appear throughout the book should allow your students to understand what graphing utilities can do, enabling them to visualize, verify, or explore what they have already graphed or manipulated by hand. The book’s technology coverage is intended to reinforce, but never replace, algebraic solutions.

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