Nov 9th 2015

Real World Calculus: How Maths Drives Formula One and Launches Angry Birds (FutureLearn)

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Use real world examples to grasp advanced maths, such as differentiation and integration, with this free online calculus course.

Mathematics is at the heart of many aspects of modern life. Whether playing a game on your mobile phone, watching a Grand Prix or waking up to sunlight in the morning, maths (and more precisely, calculus) is behind the scenes.

Maths is also used in many disciplines - from economics to engineering, biology to geography. But many of us struggle with maths, and find formulae and theories difficult to grasp, meaning that we can find ourselves at a disadvantage when thinking about certain careers.

This free online course approaches maths from a different angle. We will take familiar, real world activities, such as motor racing and mobile games like Angry Birds, and use them to uncover the basic elements of calculus.

Together, we will look at the key ideas of calculus:

- differentiation: how things changes

- integration: how we put these changes together to decide what happens in the future

- and the fundamental theorem of calculus: how differentiation and integration are related.

We will meet experts from economics, physics and engineering, who will describe how they use maths in their own work. In this way, you’ll be learning some powerful mathematical skills through some very familiar, real world applications.

Join us on a journey from the race track to the solar system, and gain valuable skills as you travel.