4 Math Concepts You Need To Know Before College

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4 Math Concepts You Need To Know Before College

If math is not your forte, you may be disappointed that you must master some math concepts to get into college. After all, math is critical in many different study areas and careers. With that in mind, we’re going to look at some of the areas of math you will probably need to address.

1. Algebra

Algebra is one of the leading math concepts that many students struggle with. However, it makes up a large portion of many maths exams, so it is vital to dedicate a lot of revision to this. You will thank yourself when looking at undergrad student loan options and on your way to college!

So, what sort of algebra questions can you expect? First, you need to know algebra’s notation, vocabulary, and manipulation. This begins by using and interpreting algebraic manipulation, including brackets and coefficients written as fractions instead of decimals.

It also includes a/b in place of a ÷ b, 3y in place of y + y + y, and ab instead of an x b. You also need to know how to substitute numerical values into expressions and formulate, including scientific formulae. 

Also, ensure you understand and know how to utilize the vocabulary and concepts of inequalities, identities, formulae, equations, expressions, factors, and terms. You will also need to simplify algebraic expressions by expanding the products of two binomials, taking out common factors, multiplying a single time over a bracket, and collecting like terms. Finally, make sure you know the difference between an identity and an equation and how to use standard mathematical formulae to change the subject.

Black Click Pen on White Paper and math book
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2. Angles

You will probably also need to know the basics of angles to get into college. Firstly, you need to know about the different types of angles. For example, you need to know that a 90° angle is a quarter turn, known as a right angle, 180° is a half turn, and 360° is a complete turn.

A small square denotes a right angle, so you can easily distinguish this when looking at illustrations on your math papers. The three different types of tips you need to know are as follows—a reflex angle, which is between 180° and 360°, an obtuse angle, which is between 90° and 180°; and an acute angle, which is an angle that is less than 90°. 

You also need to know how to work out angles at a point—they add up to 360°, and tips on a straight line – they add up to 180°. Once you have mastered this, move onto angles on parallel bars. When another line cuts through parallel lines, it is called intersecting transversal.

This generates a pair of angles that have unique properties. Again, you need to know how to calculate this. You also need to know about different triangles, their grades, sides, quadrilaterals, polygons, symmetry, and tessellations. 

3. Fractions

Fractions exam questions can be tricky, so make sure to study up. You can guarantee that there will be some fractions on your test to get into college, so it is vital to get to grips with this area of mathematics. So, what type of fraction questions could be featured on your exam?

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You will find that the main areas are multiplying and dividing fractions, adding and subtracting fractions, canceling fractions, and structuring fractions. In addition, as per the Edexcel syllabus, you need to know how to interpret percentages and fractions as operators and identify and work with fractions in ratio problems. You will also be expected to know how to work interchangeably with terminating decimals and the bits that correspond, for example, 0.375 and 3/8 or 3.5 and 7/2. 

If you are struggling with questions on fractions, it is a good idea to look for animated walkthroughs and videos that can help you. This is advisable, as you can see a step-by-step guide of the working out behind the question. You can find online courses on fractions (and any other math subject) on Udemy. Find a class that will help you today!

If this is an area, you particularly struggle with, keep practicing until you feel comfortable. Please don’t focus on more accessible subjects simply because you find them more enjoyable. 

4. Graphs

Math graphs

Graphs questions can be one of the most challenging math concepts in the test. However, you know what they say—practice makes perfect, so you can certainly master the art of graphs. Below, we will look at what type of questions you can expect in this area of math. 

Firstly, you need to learn about coordinates. This is widely considered the easiest part of the graph syllabus. Coordinates show you how to get from the origin to a specific position on a grid or graph. For example, the coordinate (4, 2) means you need to go four to the right and two up.

You also need to learn how to draw straight-line graphs. These graphs are written in the following form: y = mx + c. With this formula, m equates to the steepness of the chart, otherwise known as the gradient.

You then have c, which is the y-intercept of the graph; basically, this is where the chart cuts through the y-axis. You also need to understand the equations of straight-line graphs. 

Finally, spend some time getting to grips with parallel and perpendicular graphs. Parallel lines are lines that are never going to cross, as they are set the same distance apart at all points, irrespective of how far they are extended. Perpendicular refers to two lines that meet at a right angle. If the product of their gradients is -1, two graphs will be perpendicular.

These are the four most important math concepts you must master before college. If you can handle these four subjects, you will be sure to pass your entrance exam and move on with school! Remember that Udemy is an excellent resource if you’re struggling with something. You can take hundreds of online courses to learn or review challenging concepts.

4 Math Concepts You Need to Know Before College

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