Extreme Polar Conditions

Looking at the graphs of polar curves can be quite fascinating. Doing “calculus” kinds of things is different, yet the same as in Cartesian coordinates. A discussion on the AP Calculus Community here  got me thinking about extreme values of polar functions. The terms maximum and minimum here refers to the value of r(θ) which…

Polar Equations for AP Calculus

A recent thread on the AP Calculus Community bulletin boards concerned polar equations. One teacher observed that her students do not have a very solid understanding of polar graphs when they get to calculus. I expect this is a common problem. While ideally the polar coordinate system should be a major topic in pre-calculus course,…

Parametric Equations, Polar Coordinates, and Vector-Valued Functions – Unit 9

Unit 9 includes all the topics listed in the title. These are BC only topics (CED – 2019 p. 163 – 176). These topics account for about 11 – 12% of questions on the BC exam. Comments on Prerequisites: In BC Calculus the work with parametric, vector, and polar equations is somewhat limited. I always…