Most students will benefit from extra preparation in math during the summer before coming to Clarkson. We have lots of ways for you to get some help.

Calculus Readiness Assessment
In the spring a diagnostic test is distributed to all incoming first-year students. In excess of 90% of the students respond to this. Based on their individual performance they are advised (by email to students and letters to parents) as to whether they need further practice during the summer.

We are in the process of evaluating those scores and will be sending students recommendations for actions to take over the summer to lead toward college success. In response to COVID-19, we are considering several bridge options and are waiting for finalized NYS guidance to implement those plans. Once those opportunities are in place, we will notify students of those opportunities.

Our online math refresher course (CUMATH) starts June 30, 2024. First-year Clarkson students may self-enroll via our CUMATH Moodle Course. Enrollment is open now.


Springboard to Calculus: An on-campus bootcamp

Students move in to their academic year rooms 9 days early and begin the process of settling in to college campus life. The coursework runs about 3 hours in the morning and about an hour in the afternoon, with additional 1-to-1 support during the day and recreational time in the evenings. We familiarize students with the books, software, and system they will use in first year calculus, while allowing them to work with instructors and graduate teaching assistants, exposing them to the college approach to learning. While reviewing essential topics from algebra, trigonometry and geometry, students acclimate to campus before fall classes begin. Provides students an early opportunity to establish a cohort group of like minded students and build the team study skills characteristic of highly successful Clarkson students.    

This program is a pay program. Students can enroll in this program through Clarkson Portal. In 2024 this program runs from August 15-23.

CUMath: an Online Math Refresher for STEM majors

CU Math

This is a web-based program open to any student. Go here for more details.

The program is from June 30 - August 17, 2024.


There are many books for pre-calculus courses. Here are some inexpensive ones that have lots of exercises.

  • Cliffs Quick Reviews (Algebra II, Trigonometry)
  • Schaum's Outline Series (Precalculus, College Algebra, Trigonometry)
  • Bob Miller's Calc for the Clueless: Precalc with Trigonometry
  • Barron's Trigonometry the Easy Way, Barron's Algebra the Easy Way

Private Tutoring

You may be able to find a private tutor. It doesn't have to be a math teacher, just someone who knows whether you're doing a problem right or wrong and can explain the right way. This can be a great way to get ready. Here are some pointers.

Get a book and do exercises, about one hour daily, five days a week. The important thing is to get lots of practice. Don't use a calculator for anything. Calculators are not allowed on Calculus tests at Clarkson.

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