How is calculus applied in engineering statics?

Brian E. Faulkner, Geoffrey L. Herman

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Engineering students must complete long chains of prerequisite courses to proceed through their curriculum. Prerequisite chains of mathematics courses must be completed to proceed into core engineering coursework. How necessary are these prerequisite chains? How much of this mathematics that is taught in a mathematics course reaches application in the following engineering course? This study examines how mathematics is applied in Statics. We apply the mathematics-in-use technique to examine which calculus skills and concepts are applied in this core engineering course. In a way that is surprising giving their dense prerequisites, the amount of calculus needed in statics is just 8% of the course. Despite having long prerequisite chains full of advanced calculus, require just a little bit of basic freshman calculus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - Jun 23 2018
Event125th ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Salt Lake City, United States
Duration: Jun 23 2018Dec 27 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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