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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on September 18, 2013
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I bought this book for a class that required the book and the access code for the online class. I bought it new thinking
that the access code would be valid. Unfortunately the access code did not work. After waiting for an hour to speak with
Pearson's representative, he double checked the code, told me it was a valid code, we spent another 25 minutes going over everything on the phone and
then he said he was going to send me an email with instructions on how to replace the code. I asked him to make sure if the new code was going to work and he said yes. Well, the email he sent me was to say that Pearson does not replace access code when the book is purchased outside
the university or college that the book is intended for. In other words, they don't replace codes for books purchased through Amazon.
All that time wasted and being duped by this agent by the fake name of "Dave" who is really answering the phone from India.
Pearson is doing a scam with these access codes and probably the universities are in cahoots with them. The only trustworthy and honorable company here is Amazon who refunded the money right away. I'm sorry to say but don't buy this book from Amazon, you might run into the same problem, even though it's not their fault.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on April 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover
These comments are based on the bound annotated instructor’s edition (AIE) and the online e-book from CourseSmart. I have only reviewed the textbook up through the first parts of Chapters 8 (Sections 8.1 and 8.2), so I cannot comment on content in the later chapters of the book.

In sum, this is a disappointing book and does not serve the student (or the instructor).

Content and Organization

The book misbalances remedial and advance material, and leaves out important concepts altogether.

Missing, from either Chapter R or Chapter 1, are the principles of equality (properties of equality/properties of equations) for addition/subtraction and multiplication/division. As foundational concepts, they should be included for completeness.

The Zero-Product Property of Section R.1 should be presented in Section 1.2 on solving quadratic equations where is contextually more appropriate. Section 1.2 should be expanded as a section with a more complete discussion of factoring techniques and solution methods, or it should be a chapter onto itself.

In Section 1.5, solutions to reciprocal inequalities are not fully explained. Only a limited example and exercise are given, leaving many unanswered questions about them. This should be expanded.

A thorough treatment for rational equations is missing, either in Chapter R or 1, or later in the book (Chapter 4 or 5). Nowhere does the book explicitly explain any technique for solving a rational equation.

The content of Chapter 2 is remedial. It is no more rigorous than the treatment in an intermediate algebra class. Perhaps, this material should be moved into the review chapter at the start of the text.

In Section 3.3, the concept (characteristic) of local versus absolute extremes (maxima/minima) is not properly differentiated. This creates confusion as to what are local minima/maxima and absolute maximum/minimum.

A lot of Section 4.1 repeats topics from Section 2.3, although with functional notation. Section 4.2 on building linear functions from data does not provide any instruction on how to perform a best fit. Instead the text says, “Select two points and find the equation...” which along with the illustration leaves a mistaken impression that this is the best fit. Much of Section 4.3 repeats most of Section 3.5. Section 4.5 is poorly descriptive and does not mention several other common techniques for solving rational inequalities. Perhaps, the linear aspects of Chapters 2 and 4 should be combined in one place, and the quadratic (non-linear) aspects of Chapter 4 should be a chapter by itself.

Section 5.5 (or elsewhere) does not present Descartes’ Rule of Signs, which is an important technique for factoring polynomials. Figure 19b (p.331) has a typo (extraneous blue arrow).

In Section 6.1, content is repeated on p. 426 and p.428 (Properties of exponential functions). The repetition should be eliminated.

Chapter 7 never fully organizes (clarifies) the differences with plotting angles on a coordinates system and plotting a trigonometric function on a coordinates system. The concept of Quadrants becomes confused between the two different coordinate representations. Obtuse angles are never defined, although acute angles are.

Much of Section 7.5 (Unit Circle; Properties of the Trigonometric Functions) is pointless and redundant with material elsewhere in Chapter 7.

Section 8.2 only provides a brief treatment (a single example, Example 6) of writing trigonometric expressions as algebraic expressions, which is a very important skill for advanced math (e.g., calculus). Further, this limited treatment does not properly address the determination of sign of the correct sign of the square root of the expression.

Presentation and Formatting

The overall formatting and layout of the book is confusing.

The formatting of examples (broad lines across the entire page, unexplained angle bracket icons in the lower right) clutters the page and interrupts the flow of reading. In fact, it tends to mistakenly suggest that the examples are the instructional content, confusing the student. Example 20 on Page 13 illustrates this; it looks as if “Arithmetic of Quotients” is part of the example using the Zero-Product Property. The little angle bracket in the right corner indicating the end of the example has no intuitive explanation, nor is it explained in an obvious place in the textbook. Further, what is the difference between a brown angle bracket with a dot, a plain blue angle bracket, and a small brown square (e.g., p.12)? A circus of unexplained notation!

In the annotated instructor’s edition (AIE), the exercise sections have inconsistent selected answers in the back of the book that do not match the student edition (or e-book). This is extremely frustrating. Sometimes only odd number problems have answers, sometimes both odd and even numbers have answers, and sometimes both answers are present for some problems, then only odd-numbered problems later in the same section. Sometimes, odd-numbered solutions are absent altogether. This is exceedingly confusing and makes problem assignment very difficult for the instructor using the AIE. I recommend the AIE match the student edition with only odd-number solution be provided (consistently) in the back with the exercise answers always embedded (in blue) right next to the exercise (and not put in the back for lack of space).

The book makes poor use of the wide left margin. Effective use of such valuable real estate could decrease the size and page length of the textbook.

Some italicized, step-by-step instructions are presented, though inconsistently, in the margin. These are likely ignored by the student because of their margin placement, inconsistent occurrence and deemphasized typeset. Such instructions should be explicit in the main text.

The title page outline for each chapter should list the starting page numbers for each section. This is done for sub-sections at the start of each section.

In places, the textbook uses poor sentence structure (e.g., P.289, p.541).

I can’t find the Student Resource Page (e.g., referred to on p.147). It is not in the table of contents. Further, I cannot find the textbook YouTube channel URL. Where is it?

Physical Characteristics

The physical characteristics of the book are poor.

The annotated instructor’s edition (AIE) is massive. It weighs 5.4 pounds. Yes, it is a 2-semester textbook, but 2-semester algebra & trigonometry books from other publishers do not weigh as much. It is the choice of paper that gives the book its excessive weight. Such excessive weight will make students (and instructors) reluctant to carry the book around (to class, to home, to study sessions).

The choice of paper, in addition to being excessively dense, makes it very difficult to turn and flip pages. The pages stick together and wrinkle easily making it physically difficult to use. Essential for productive studying is the ability to quickly flip through the book referring to equations, checking answers, and correlating topics. The book’s shiny paper, although great for pictures, is difficult to make notes on. The thin paper causes highlighters to bleed through and wrinkle the pages and the ink to dissolve.

The book’s binding smells. It has a strong, irritating odor that has not diminished with use. This makes the book very unpleasant to use.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I am actually using this book as a textbook for my courses in Pre Calculus; both the 3 credit course in Algebra and the 5 credit course that combines Algebra with Trigonometry. It is the most complete and most readable book I know on its subject matter. My students tend to agree with me. One word of caution: The Kindle version requires improving the ability to reach specific pages from a table of contents. Right now it is an arduos exercise.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 7, 2014
Format: Loose LeafVerified Purchase
Note: This review is for the a la carte edition.

I'm one of those weirdoes who gets my books as soon as possible, and spend the summer scanning them, before I go to class. This is the first one I opened, since it's been about, oh, 30 years since I last took a math class (not a typo). Man, have textbooks changed, and not just the prices! I can't remember books being this expensive, yet this cheaply made.

For such a huge, heavy book, with over 1200 pages and shockingly small/faint print in more places than you'd believe, Sullivan's Algebra and Trig somehow doesn't have much useful information. The concepts aren't explained well at all. They're usually just flopped out there, and it's up to your professor to explain everything. If you have the speed demon type of professor who flies over topics, never really explaining them, then you'd better become very familiar with Khan Academy. This book won't help when you go home and try to find the explanation for what Professor Speed Demon glossed over in class that day.

The book itself:

I'm shocked that there's a bound edition. I'd have to kill myself at the idea of lugging this behemoth to class and back twice a week. That's why I got the a la carte. I've split the book in half into 2 1" binders. I'll take out what I need for class in a flexible 1 inch binder with my spiral notebook and graph paper. I used dividers between each chapter for a very specific reason: so that I won't have to pick through huge chunks of the book every single time I want to look for something in this travesty of a textbook.

The pages of the book itself are shockingly crappy. They're shiny AND flimsy thin, like a cheap magazine's pages, which makes it nearly impossible to flip through the book to a page you'll need. The gloss a) makes a book so large even heaver than it has to be, and b) makes the pages stick to things like plastic view binders or folder pockets. The thinness makes the pages wad up/wrinkle easily, and difficult to sift through. About two weeks into the semester, I have a feeling that I'd find that the back and sometimes front pages will have wadded up, wrinkled or even pulled away from the rings of a plastic binder. It's like gloss and plastic want to be Siamese twins, because the gloss always sticks to the binder, and when you open it, the pages go rrrrriiipppp from the ring. Fortunately, the a la carte edtion comes with some thick cardboard dividers, probably to prevent even more tearing of the flimsy pages. Use them in the front and back to keep this from happening; however, you'll still want or spring for some paper page dividers, to make it easier to flip through the book to what you'll need, like how all those idiotic set symbols work, which I can never seem to remember.

The only nice things about the book are the pictures and colors--very nice, thanks to that infernal gloss. It seems to be a comprehensive book, for people who will be taking more advanced mathematics down the line. Maybe next semester, when I don't need to buy another math book, the endless pages of this door stop will make sense, even if the content won't without a professor explaining how things work.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Algebra and Trigonometry plus MyMathLab/MystatLab-Access Card...

My son is finding the math book very useful, especially the MathLab program. Thanks for offering the products at a much lower price!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 13, 2012
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I use this book for my Pre- Calculus class at college. The content is good, but confusing. The book doesn't explain in details how to solve a problem and work problems are sometimes impossible to do, since the book doesn't explain how to solve them.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on September 11, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I was really glad to see that I could download this textbook for my PC. It saved me money and time, I am currently using the book for some of my classes and am really satisfied with it.
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on June 10, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I found the book itself to be good---standard explanations and examples you would find in a textbook. I purchased the Kindle version so that I would be able to work on multiple computers with the same copy (without lugging the book around), which was nice. It only works on the later Kindle and not on iPhone, however. Fairly easy to navigate (though not as easy as a regular textbook, in my opinion). The one catch that I hadn't considered was the inability to resell the book when you're done. The cost is a sunken one--you'll never be able to recoup even a fraction of the book because of the digital restriction, which is something I wish I'd considered. If you're budget conscious, consider that reality.
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on May 29, 2014
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Ordered this book and received it in only a few short days and as stated was in mint condition! Also the book stated it would have my math lab unused (as we all know can be sketchy) and the seller was true to their word. Perfect book in perfect condition that met criteria stated.
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on October 2, 2013
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
This is a great product for those taking Algebra w/ Trigonometry online or as a hybrid course. I bought is for that reason and it much easier for me to understand the concept in the book than to have to scroll through example problems online.
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