Is Calculus Hard? [What Students SAY]

Calculus is a branch of math that mostly deals with differentiation and integration. Now in colleges, the basic overview of the subject is clearly explained. When a student moves to the university that is when the subject shows extreme difficulty. Now the entire course is divided into three categories one is named Cal I, Cal II, and Cal III.

In Cal I, the student is required to grasp the initial concepts of differentiation and integration. This first category also includes knowledge of functions and the ls. Now the next category is named Cal II. In this, the students are required to spend more hours if they want to have any hope of clearing this course.

The category includes differential and integral equations, the concepts of sequences and series, the knowledge of parametric equations, and some polar coordinates. In the third category of the subject, there are advanced concepts of everything that a student will have to learn in the first two categories.

Is Calculus Hard in 2023?

The answer to this is Yes, very hard. The subject plays an important role as a bridge between high school mathematics and the mathematics used in some of the higher complexity level degrees in universities. The most recent study showed that the failure rate of calculus in Los Angeles was about 17 % back in 2020.

The subject is a foundation course for the upcoming hard concepts of higher-level mathematics. The students with STEM degrees often have less difficulty in studying the subject while the students of other majors find calculus quite challenging and hard. The subject is also being studied in the fields like psychology, and other health science majors. The students of such majors can find the subject quite difficult, and they will have a tough time grasping the concepts of the subject.

However, for the students of mathematics and engineering, it is just a start and these students will have to face courses that are more complex than this. Therefore, for them, it is the easiest of subjects in their first year. Because in the upcoming years, they will, have to face some of the most advanced concepts of mathematics and for their base, the subject is being taught in the early stages of a STEM degree.

Therefore, overall the subject is difficult as it uses a more complex form of calculations as compared to the previously used knowledge of mathematics, which is introduced in middle school.

Difficulty Table

SubjectPass Rate
Database Systems60.5%
Operating Systems78.2%
Software Engineering85.6%

It requires a new way of thinking and problem-solving, which may be difficult to pick initially. It involves different concepts that may be challenging to understand. This can make it hard for some students to understand the material. It may be a challenge for some people. Some students may think it quite simple, while others would find it difficult.

Why is calculus so hard?

The subject is quite on the complex side, the complexity of this subject is the reason behind its difficulty. Now the other common subjects related to mathematics in the classes before high school are not that complex as compared to the subject their operations are simple and require less focus and creativity while cal requires the student to be more focused and need to have a strong imagination to understand the concepts.

Another major reason behind this subject’s difficulty is that this subject uses some entirely new concepts of mathematics as compared to the mathematics used in the early stages of schooling.

Is calculus harder than physics?

No, is the quick response to that. A large area of science is physics. To master physics students are required to complete some difficult courses of study. Now if someone wants to master cal it only covers a specific knowledge group, While in physics a student must master not only concepts of physics but the student also requires a strong grip over mathematics courses, and one of these courses is called calculus.

Overall physics is tougher than the subject because the concepts used in the subject are essential to solving some of the difficult equations of physics. Nevertheless, without the help of the subject, those equations cannot be solved so the subject is essential but easy to grasp as compared to the broader field of study known as physics.

Can calculus be harder than statistics?

Both calculus and statistics are sub-branches of mathematics. The concepts of the subject are quite difficult. The majority of individuals struggle to understand the subject’s higher level. While the field of statistics is broader, the concepts can easily be understood. At the beginner’s level of statistics, it is easier as compared to calculus.

However, it all depends upon the student’s interest if someone is interested in statistical analysis then even at the advanced level of the subject, they will understand it easily while if someone is interested in the subject then they will enjoy doing the calculations. Nevertheless, in the more advanced level of statistics, students must master the concepts of probability and regression analysis, which can be tougher than the subject can.

Check Out Is High School Physics Hard?

Is calculus harder than Linear Algebra?

Yes, the subject is difficult compared to linear algebra. Concepts of linear algebra are the building blocks of the subject, without these concepts cal can be very difficult. However, the concepts of linear algebra are simpler as compared to subjects in linear algebra a student is only required to grasp the concepts of equations of order one while in cal the order of equations can be more than one. And when the order of equations increases the difficulty level increases which is the main reason that the failure rate of cal is higher.

Can calculus be the hardest sub-branch of mathematics?

No, the subject cannot be categorized as the hardest sub-branch of mathematics for students majoring in engineering and mathematics; the concepts used in the subject lays the foundation of upcoming difficult concepts. The course serves as the foundation for the mathematical understanding that will be applied later in the maths and engineering degrees.

Is calculus harder than trigonometry?

Yes, calculus is much harder than trigonometry. Trigonometry is a sub-branch of mathematics that uses calculations related to measuring angles. Now in Cal, we use the concepts of both linear algebra and trigonometry.

Is this harder than chemistry?

No, the concepts used in calculus are easier than the concepts and the reactions used in the sub-field of science known as chemistry. To clear chemistry you need to be focused a lot. But in calculus, if you know the formulas then you can get around it

Try Is College Algebra Hard?

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Jenny Blake
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