6 days ago
Admissions Advice

MV calc or linear algebra?

I’m a high school junior trying to figure out my schedule for next year. I’m currently enrolled in AP Calc BC and have an A for both quarters. Would it be better for me to take multivariable calculus or linear algebra? I want the one that looks best to colleges and would help me most with college classes.


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1 answer

6 days ago

Hey twins! I'm a senior, and I took AP Calc BC my junior year too. This year I took multivariable calculus-- linear algebra wasn't an option available to me.

I would consider how either of these classes are going to weigh on your GPA. My Calc III class is weighted the same as an AP class would be on my GPA. If either of these classes has a higher weight, or is considered an honors class, I would think that that one would be the better one to take.

If you're doing well in AP Calc, I would think you would be set up for success in Calc III. I don't know much about linear algebra, but from some brief research it sounds like it would be easier than multivariable calc. But, if you think you have a chance of struggling in multivariable calc, then linear algebra might be a smarter move to protect your grades.

Personally, I would take multivariable if I were you. That way, calculus will be fresh in your mind taking it in high school rather than later in college. I also saw something saying that typically students studying math in college would finish off calc before they go into linear algebra, which doesn't really involve calc principles. Multivariable calc is a challenge for sure, but it sounds like you could handle it! In the end, you know what will be best for you better than anyone else does. :)


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