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Calculus: Early Transcendentals 5th Edition

581 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0534393212
ISBN-10: 0534393217
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

The late James Stewart received his M.S. from Stanford University and his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto. He did research at the University of London and was influenced by the famous mathematician George Polya at Stanford University. Stewart was most recently Professor of Mathematics at McMaster University, and his research field was harmonic analysis. Stewart was the author of a best-selling calculus textbook series published by Cengage Learning, including CALCULUS, CALCULUS: EARLY TRANSCENDENTALS, and CALCULUS: CONCEPTS AND CONTEXTS, as well as a series of precalculus texts.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 1320 pages
  • Publisher: Brooks Cole; 5 edition (December 24, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0534393217
  • ISBN-13: 978-0534393212
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 8.7 x 1.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (581 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #147,585 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Stewart received the M.S. degree from Stanford University and the Ph.D. from the University of Toronto. After two years as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of London, he became Professor of Mathematics at McMaster University. His research has been in harmonic analysis and functional analysis. Stewart's books include a series of high school textbooks as well as a best-selling series of calculus textbooks. He is also co-author, with Lothar Redlin and Saleem Watson, of a series of college algebra and precalculus textbooks. Translations of his books include those in Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, Korean, Chinese, Greek, and Indonesian.

A talented violinst, Stewart was concertmaster of the McMaster Symphony Orchestra for many years and played professionally in the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra. Having explored connections between music and mathematics, Stewart has given more than 20 talks worldwide on Mathematics and Music and is planning to write a book that attempts to explain why mathematicians tend to be musical.

Stewart was named a Fellow of the Fields Institute in 2002 and was awarded an honorary D.Sc. in 2003 by McMaster University. The library of the Fields Institute is named after him. The James Stewart Mathematics Centre was opened in October, 2003, at McMaster University.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

152 of 162 people found the following review helpful By R. Markham on January 24, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I took calculus over 20 years ago using a book by Howard Anton. Wanting to brush up on my skills, I recently took a Calc II and Calc III course for review. The book I used this time around was Stewart's "Calculus", 5th edition. I thought it would be a breeze, but trust me, after 20 years, it wasn't. Thinking there might be a more helpful calculus book out there I decided to see what else might be available. In my search I came across several other excellent calculus books, but after all was said and done, I have to say that the Stewart textbook is really one of the best.

One of the of the calculus books that almost always received a lot of praise was "Calculus With Analytic Geometry", by Ron Larson. In fact it received such high praises, I found a good deal on a used copy of the seventh edition and bought it to supplement the Stewart text. And I have to admit, I found the layout in the Larson text to be much better than the Stewart text. With Stewart, I was constantly having to highlight things and draw in boxes or add notes to show where examples ended and text began, or what an example was supposed to be teaching, or what specific step in an example was key. In the Larson text, all of this is nicely laid out. Each example is labeled to indicate what it is about, and colored text, annotations, arrows, etc. are used to clearly show where the important points are. When it came to explanations though, I did not find the Larson text to give any better explanations than the Stewart text. In fact, I often felt the Stewart text provided slightly better explanations. I would read the Stewart text and then read the Larson text and think, "Gee, I'm glad Stewart pointed this or that out". Overall though, the differences were minor.
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131 of 140 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover
There is a reason why the reviews of Stewart's Calculus textbook vary so widely. It's because Stewart is challenging. Some instructors favor Stewart because they are steeped enough in the Math to appreciate Stewart's applications and explanations of Calculus's uses in so many fields of study. But students who struggle with Math may have a difficult time with Stewart's rigor, and his algebraic/conceptual jumps. Let's review some specific qualities of this book:
o Text: The text is pretty clearly written, with no errors I know of, but makes some conceptual leaps periodically.
o Layout: The layout is excellent. It makes great use of consistent color coding and typographical conventions to identify classes of concepts. (I.e., It's always easy to spot and distinguish Examples, Proofs, Rules, and New Sections.)
However, there are some algebraic manipulations that are sometimes combined into one line that should probably be expanded out and explained better. Even though students are expected to understand the algebra at this point, it's often crucial to explain _why_ certain algebraic manipulations are being done. Usually there is a certain form of an expression or equation that is useful or desirable for a specific reason. Such reasons need to be explicated side-by-side with the steps to reach the desired form, instead of just skipping to the desired form (as sometimes is done).
o Terminology: In some places Stewart talks about "constants" when what he really means are "scalars." There is a distinction between these two concepts that is important in other fields of math that could be confused. He also uses different letters to identify "any real number" or "a particular real number" than is standard in many other texts. This also could lead to confusion.
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219 of 249 people found the following review helpful By Stan Vernooy on May 12, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I was one of the pre-publication reviewers for the second edition of this book. I have not been shy about telling a publisher that their book stinks if that's my opinion. But the Stewart book was then, and remains now, IMHO, the best introductory calculus text available. Please note that the majority of negative reviews came from people who have seen exactly one calculus book, and they clearly don't like calculus! But I have taught from three of the most popular books, and I've read most of the others. There may be other books which take a radically entertaining, non-traditional, and more superficial approach to the subject, and those books may meet with approval from people who really don't want to learn calculus. But of those (many) books which cover the traditional topics in an introductory calculus course, no other author has written a text as learnable as Stewart's. On every topic, Stewart is clearly conscious of the fact that his reader doesn't already know the subject, and he has given some thought to exactly what has to be explained in order for the student to learn successfully. Remember, most textbooks are not written for students: they are written for the professors who are going to choose the books. Professors are not generally impressed with a book which spends a half page clearly describing the meaning of a theorem which can be written with a one-line equation. But students will appreciate the effort Stewart has exerted to help them learn. Stewart does not sugar-coat or resort to gimmicks or superficiality in order to make the material learnable. All the material is there, it's just presented with an awareness that the reader is trying to learn calculus for the first time. If you are taking a calculus course with any other book, try to get a cheap used copy of the Stewart to use as a supplement. It will help!
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