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BEGINNING ALGEBRA

Course Description:
Provide the student with an understanding of elementary algebra. The course will cover topics
such as operations with signed numbers, factoring, and solving linear and quadratic equations
and graphing linear equations. Successful completion will prepare the student for MAT 020
Intermediate Algebra.

Developmental Education – MAT 015 will not apply toward graduation requirements.

Course Prerequisite:
To enroll in MAT 015, Beginning Algebra, a student must meet one of the following:
1. MAT 014, Beginning Mathematics, with a grade of “C” or above.
2. Qualifying scores on the ACT, COMPASS or ASSET tests.

Required Text:
Beginning Algebra, Lial, Hornsby, McGinnis, 9th edition, 2004.

Course Objectives/Outcomes:
The primary objective of this course is to prepare the student to be successful in MAT 020,
Intermediate Algebra. On completion, the student should have achieved these outcomes:
I. Arithmetic and Algebra Manipulation
A. Evaluate arithmetic expressions (including absolute values) using the order of operations
and properties of real numbers.
B. Evaluate algebraic expressions.
C. Apply the laws of exponents to simplify expressions containing integer exponents.
D. Express numbers in scientific notation.
E. Perform addition, subtraction, multiplication and division on polynomial expression .
F. Factor expressions with common factors, expression that require grouping , trinomial
expressions, and difference of square expressions.
G. Perform addition, subtraction, multiplication and division on rational expressions.
H. Evaluate radicals, approximating those that are irrational.
I. Simply numeric radicals using the product and quotient rules.

II. Equations and Inequalities
A. Solve linear equations in one variable.
B. Solve proportion equations .
C. Solve linear inequalities in one variable showing solutions on a number line.
D. Solve literal equations that do not require factoring.
E. Solve quadratic equations by factoring.
F. Develop and solve mathematical models including number, geometry, and percent
applications.

III. Graphs on a Coordinate Plane
A. Plot points on a coordinate plane.
B. Graph linear equations, by plotting points.
C. Graph linear equations using intercepts.
D. Graph linear equations using the y- intercept and slope .

IV. Analysis of Equations and Graphs
A. Identify the x-intercept, y-intercept, and slope of the line given its graph.
B. Identify the x-intercept, y-intercept, and slope of the line given its equation.
C. Determine the equation of a line given its graph, its slope and y-intercept, and its slope
and a point.
D. Determine equations of both horizontal and vertical lines.
E. Determine whether or not an equation is linear.
F. Calculate the slope of a line passing through two given points.

Method of Instruction :
A study assignment sheet will be provided at the beginning of each chapter or unit. Everyone
must keep up with the homework assignments. Homework must be completed prior to the next
class meeting. This is essential to understanding the problems and test preparation. A
homework quiz - selected homework problems, will need to be recopied in class and turned in
for homework credit during a select timeframe, usually 5 minutes for each homework section.
These select problems will be determined by the instructor and handed in at the end of the
announced timeframe. You will not be able to use your book or your neighbor, only your
homework papers or notebook. You must be in class for these homework credit opportunities.
Those who miss the quiz cannot make it up, unless it is due to a school-sponsored activity and
then it must be accomplished during office hours within two class days of the missed quiz.
Don’t miss those homework points, they are the only scores for your homework grade.
Homework problems will not be accepted if only answers appear on the homework quiz -
work must be shown. The minimum acceptable work for credit on problems is as follows:
 1. State the problem.
 2. Show any necessary work steps.
 3. Then state the answer.

Class time is used to answer student questions from the previous assignment and to
introduce/provide explanation of the current assignment. Reviews are accomplished prior to the
chapter or unit test. No homework quizzes will be given on a test day. Pop quizzes may be
given besides homework quizzes, be prepared! Calculators are permitted.

Students with particular questions on material covered in class or assigned problems may get
help from the instructor. Office hours will be posted. Additionally, math tutors, software
tutorials on computers, and videos are available in the Instructional Resource Center (IRC).
These should be used as additional resource material. They can be a great aid to your success.
You are highly encouraged to take advantage of these aids. In fact, the instructor may inform
you that tutoring should be started. If this happens – start tutoring, you need help at that point
rather than later, if you realize it or not. Check in the IRC for times and availability . It’s free!

Method of Evaluation:
Allen County Community College has implemented a student academic gains assessment
program. The purpose of this program is to ensure instructional excellence and to maintain
regional accreditation. As a part of this program all students are expected to take an Entrance
exam upon enrolling and an Exit exam upon graduating. Students will also be asked by their
instructors to participate in some form of pre/post evaluation in each class.

Class grades are determined by: Homework quizzes- 20%; Chapter or unit - 80%; with the
following grade scale:
A 90% or above
B 80 to 89%
C 70 to 79%
D 60 to 69%
F below 60%.

The class is not graded on the curve, nor or any tests graded on the curve.

Testing policy: Chapter or unit tests will be announced in advance. Therefore, the student is
expected to be in class to take the test on that day. Only through prior arrangements will you be
excused from taking the test at the announced time. Otherwise, you are not excused, and your
grade for the test is a zero . Do not expect a make-up test! Since this is a developmental course
with the primary objective of preparing the student for Intermediate Algebra, students may retake
an exam, and receive the better of the two scores. A student with a test score less than 80% is
expected to retake. Those with higher grades may request to take the retake. Retakes must be
taken during the announced retake window, generally 4-5 school days after the initial test is
returned to the students in class. If you miss this window of opportunity, you miss the chance for
the retake. Retakes are a special opportunity, not a guarantee. Plan your life accordingly.
Once a test is started, there is no stopping. It must be completed prior to leaving the room. This
includes testing in the IRC. The final exam will be taken in the announced timeframe and cannot
be retaken. Pencils will be used in this class for exams and homework quizzes. If you don’t
have a pencil, get one. Partial credit cannot be given if work is not shown on exams.

Academic Integrity:
Dishonesty will result in failure for the course and or academic dismissal from class. Do your
own work when taking quizzes and tests. Teamwork is encouraged during other times, both
inside and outside of class.

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