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Tapping into mathematics
Do you have a graphics or scientific calculator? If so, this unit will help you to...
Do you have a graphics or scientific calculator? If so, this unit will help you to understand the different functions and facilities available. With a focus on arithmetic, you will learn what a powerful tool this type of calculator can be.
By the end of this unit you should have:
- started to become familiar with your scientific or graphics calculator and its use in investigating everyday problems;
- developed good practice in relation to calculator use;
- be able to use your calculator for the following:
- arithmetic involving the operations of +, −, ×, ÷ and the use of brackets;
- squaring and square rooting numbers;
- reciprocals and powers of numbers;
- calculations involving percentages, large and small numbers, scientific notation and ;
- be able to understand the concepts of a mathematical function and its inverse (doing and undoing), rounding answers appropriately, fixing the number of decimal places displayed by a calculator, storing numbers in a calculator memory.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Exploring your calculator
- 2 Using your calculator for basic arithmetic
- 3 Some calculator puzzles
- 4 Squares and other powers
- 5 Everyday calculations
- 6 Large and small numbers
- 7 Mathematical functions
- 8 Why a calculator?
- 9 When to use the calculator
- 10 Conclusion
- Next steps
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Tapping into mathematics
This module is designed for students who have a graphics or scientific calculator. It gives some examples from the TI-84. So if you have a different calculator, some things may be a little different and you may need to consult your instruction booklet. There is a lot to learn about any calculator and it may take you some time to get to know how to use its many facilities. This module focuses on using it to do arithmetic. Even in this limited role, you will find it a powerful tool with many advantages. Depending upon your previous experience using a calculator, this module may take you more or less time than others.
Although this unit uses the TI-84 calculator in its examples, you should still be able to complete this unit by using any other graphic or scientific calculator.
This material is from our archive and is an adapted extract from Open mathematics (MU120), which is no longer taught by The Open University. If you want to study formally with us, you may wish to explore other courses we offer in this.
This is an extract from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Mathematics Education courses or view the range of currently available OU Mathematics Education courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Wednesday, 10th July 2013
Last updated on: Wednesday, 10th July 2013
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements section.
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