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Precalculus: Mathematics for Calculus, 6th Edition 6th Edition

3.7 out of 5 stars 227 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0840068071
ISBN-10: 0840068077
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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.

Lothar Redlin grew up on Vancouver Island, received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Victoria, and a Ph.D. from McMaster University in 1978. He subsequently did research and taught at the University of Washington, the University of Waterloo, and California State University, Long Beach. He is currently Professor of Mathematics at The Pennsylvania State University, Abington Campus. His research field is topology.

Saleem Watson received his Bachelor of Science degree from Andrews University in Michigan. He did graduate studies at Dalhousie University and McMaster University, where he received his Ph.D. in 1978. He subsequently did research at the Mathematics Institute of the University of Warsaw in Poland. He also taught at The Pennsylvania State University. He is currently Professor of Mathematics at California State University, Long Beach. His research field is functional analysis.
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Product Details

  • Series: Precalculus (Book 6)
  • Hardcover: 1008 pages
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning; 6 edition (January 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0840068077
  • ISBN-13: 978-0840068071
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.9 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (227 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,720 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By James Robert Deluze on August 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I'm in my 60's and have not studied math in school for over 40 years. This was my first math book for college since the 60's. I found it easy to read, clear, and too the point. I was able to understand it. That says a lot. Math has always been hard for me, so this book is well done if I can learn from it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I thought at first maybe I had the wrong edition or something, but no... fifth edition it is. Some chapters the answers don't match up with the questions in the book i.e. it will say #107 when it's really the answer to #95, #109 is #97 etc. Some of the chapter test answers are just the wrong problem (some have slight mistakes, like copied down wrong. Others are just a completely different problem). I really expect more than this. I'm going down to the bookstore tomorrow to see if it's just my copy (as none of the other reviewers here seemed to notice). Otherwise I'm contacting the publisher.

On the bright side, the problems which ARE correct have been tremendously helpful. Just as an answer guide should. The only reason it's earned two stars.

I should really give it one, because after all... this IS MATH and accuracy is of utmost importance!!!
2 Comments 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
This book is one of the worst math text that I have had the pleasure of using. The explanations are poor and I have to google the material for better examples and explanations. If it was the last available reference in a post apocalyptic earth it would work, but not effectively. With so many other quality texts on amazon choose another for one independent study. However, if you need it for class buy it, scan the HW problems, and send it back then promptly purchase another book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
this is by FAR the worst math text i have ever had the misfortune of being forced to use (university of new mexico). there is absolutely no explanation of principals in terms that even come close to being understandable. the only examples available for review are the most basic explanations possible and shed no light AT ALL on how to solve more elaborate problems. of course the author would make the argument that the user of this text is supposed to know the basics of the principals in the book, to which I would say, the purpose of a book is to LEARN, whether i should or shouldnt already know something is not the point. get used to seeing "heres a problem" and "heres the answer" with no explanation on how to get there. useless.
3 Comments 24 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
I sometimes pictured a group of people sitting around a table writing this book and suddenly one of them says "OHH OHH, I got one! Let's stick THIS trick question in there!" You get the feeling a lot of passive aggressive thought went into the writing of this book. Here's a summary simple example of how this book is written.

How to solve square roots: √4 = 2 * 2 thus the √4 = 2

Now you try it! √-1

This approach makes it difficult to build any type of understanding for the basics when every question is at the extreme end of possibilities. I could understand if question 10 of 10 was extreme, but not the first questions in each sections. Additionally, this book uses completely non-standard labels for things which makes it even more confusing. Here's a made up example of how this can be confusing:

Pythagorean theorem: a^2 = c^2 + b^2

All in all, I found myself using this book only for the topics, then going elsewhere to actually learn about it and find examples. I found this is the only way to work with this book as the content and explanations are just garbage.
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Format: Kindle Edition
While I am not an expert in mathematics, I usually do not have a difficult time figuring out problems based on the textbook alone. The explanations in this work read rather muddily; the structure of the content can be confusing; the examples seem insufficient towards applying the concepts learned. There were quite a few times where the problems given did not honestly reflect the explanatory material of the chapter. Some of the answers provided in the back seem to be incorrect given the explanations. Considering the cost of the text, the quality of presentation falls short of the money spent. I would strongly recommend against the use of this textbook as either a collection of exercises for classroom use or a method for self-study. Hopefully the publisher will work towards creating a stronger, friendlier text for the next edition.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While cross-checking my work I noticed that a problem was incorrect. So I called Cengage to them about the problem. They made a note about it and told me "We'll let the editor know". 15 minutes later I call them again to tell them that they missed an entire problem! On page 205 of this book you'll find that answer 11 is incorrect, and that the answer to number 23 is actually the answer to number 25. To make matters worse number 25 is actually the answer to 27! And then we get to their solution to number 29, a solution to a problem that doesn't even exist in the textbook.

So if you do get this book, don't blindly believe everything it says. If you can't figure out how they got their answer it might be because they're wrong.

Needless to say, Cengage will be receiving an angry letter from me.
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