My DD is now strongly looking at applying to a few of the SA's (USNA, USMA and USCGA). She was not on the advanced math track, but has excelled in math. She is now considering doubling up her junior year with trig and pre-calc. My question is how much does it matter that you have taken calc in high school? We are concerned she will overload herself and other areas (sports/eca's) will suffer. Our plebe was in advanced math and validated calc 1, but said many of his shipmates have not taken calc in high school? She will be taking honors chem, prin of engineering, AP english, AP US history, honors Spanish, honors algebra 2 and maybe pre-calc. Any insights? thx

My DS took pre-calc during the summer at a community college so he could take AP Calc this year. Getting Calc 1 out of the way is important for certain majors. Maybe not as important at SA's, but to graduate in 4 years from Wash U in MechE they expect you to start in Calc 2.

I would recommend taking Calc before arriving at a SA. Can she take a summer course so she doesn't have to double up? Although SA want very well rounded applicants, they look heavily at math, chemistry and physics grades.

When in high school, I only ever took up to Pre-Calc. I've taken Calc 1 at the university level now and I feel like I had a bunch of gaps, e. g. things I was expected to know. I wish that I had been able to take AP Calc. It only provides a strong foundation for further study in math and even if she doesn't validate the course at the Academy, she would have a strong foundation in math. As has been suggested, a Calc class could only help.

Take Calculus! Our family got transferred (military) during my DS's high school math track to Calculus. When he got settled in his new school, he had to double up on Trig and Anal. Geometry while also taking Algebra II so that he could get it all in before taking Calculus his senior year. Do what you have to do to get Cal. in before graduation. If it comes down to the wire, they really like to see Calculus and it may help with admission. On the other hand, if it causes grades to slip, might not be a great idea. My DS has ended up with a C in Cal. for the semester with a specific request from admin. to see his 7th semester grades. Not sure how that will play out but a C in Cal. may look better than no Cal?? We'll see. I do know a super highly qualified girl in our local HS should have been a shoe in for USNA but didn't take Cal. and many believe it kept her out in the end. ALSO!!! If your DD does double up so that she can get the math she needs...they may see that as an indicator of how how important admission was to her. At least, that's what we're hoping for! Best of Luck!