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Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Learning Math 3 Class Options FAQs in English

EUHSD—Math 3 Class Options FAQs

Why should I take 3 or 4 years of math?

Besides teaching computation and number sense, math teaches many skills that are used in the “real world,” such as problem solving, logic, and perseverance.  In the EUHSD, we want to graduate students who are proficient in these skills, not only for success in their future math classes and college courses, but also for their success in future careers. Most universities, including the UC and CSU schools, require 3 years of math and strongly recommend 4 years of mathematics study.

What are my options for my third year math course?

As shown in the diagram below right, students have the option of taking Math 3 with Statistics (Math 3S) or Math 3 with Pre-Calculus (Math 3C).

What ‘s the difference between Math 3S and Math 3C?

Math 3 Class Options Diagram

Both Math 3 courses include many of the same concepts. Math 3S places emphasis on topics in statistics, whereas  Math 3C places emphasis on pre-calculus topics.

If I take 3C, when will I learn the Statistics topics?

Although we believe the Statistics topics are very important, it was necessary to remove them in order to make space for the pre-calculus topics that provide a foundation for Calculus.   Students who take 3C will not learn the statistics topics until a college statistics course, unless they opt to take AP Statistics senior year.

What will I take my 4th year of math?

As shown in the diagram on the right, students have three options for a fourth year math course. Math 3S is designed to prepare students for Math 4 and AP Statistics. Math 3C is designed for students who are determined to take AP Calculus their senior year.  There are pathways from Math 3C to AP Statistics and from Math 3S to AP Calculus for a student who has a change of interest.

If I take Math 3S, can I still take AP Calculus? (What’s the dotted line?)

Yes! We will provide a summer bridge opportunity for students who decide to take AP Calculus after Math 3S. This will give them access to the pre-calculus concepts that are taught in Math 3C and Math 4.

Which one will better prepare me for college?

Both Math 3 courses prepare students for college-level mathematics study! Both courses prepare you to take AP classes your senior year if you choose to do so.

How do I choose which math course to take?

We believe that the sequence of Math 3S followed by Math 4 will best serve most students.  This will prepare them to take any college level math course that they choose, whether in a statistics or calculus related field.  This path emphasizes mathematics needed to be an informed citizen, interpret the massive amounts of data available today, as well as critically analyze information sources in our world. This path emphasizes the mathematics we all need daily, as well as what is needed for the majority of college degrees.   We believe that even students who will need calculus for their chosen career would benefit from the exposure to Math 3S , then Math 4, and then enrolling in a Calculus course their first year in college.

Here is a flow chart to help you decide!

EUHSD Math 3 Class Options Diagram

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.  Some common STEM majors are math, physics,  chemistry, computer science, and engineering. Majors within these fields usually require their students to take Calculus in college. Check out this list of STEM careers.

Why offer so many options?

There are many different facets of mathematics, and we want students to get to explore the mathematics that they are most interested in and will most likely help them in their chosen career path. We believe that the sequence of Math 3S followed by Math 4 will best serve most students.  This will prepare them to take any college level math course that they choose, whether in a statistics or calculus related field.  Most majors will require some type of college-level statistics course. This path provides them with the most broad exposure to mathematics in context, as it is used in the “real world,”  and preparation for future career or coursework. We also understand that there are students who have identified a future path of study or who are determined to take Advanced Placement math courses their senior year, and we want to provide those students with a path to be able to take either AP Statistics or AP Calculus their senior year.

What are the specific topics covered in the third year math courses?

Both Math 3C and Math 3S Math 3S Math 3C
Reasoning and Proof-algebraic and geometric Designing Experiments Extended study of functions including translation, reflection, stretching, and
Inequalities and Linear Programming Extend similarity and congruence of other shapes Extended study of polynomials (division, rational functions)
Similarity and Congruence for triangles Samples and variation Trig Functions and Identities
Polynomial and rational functions
Circular and Circular Functions
Recursion and Iteration
Inverse Functions (exponentials and logarithms)

Additional questions may be addressed to Renee Farrell, EUHSD Math Specialist, 760-291-3003 or