RARITAN VALLEY COMMUNITY COLLEGE
ACADEMIC COURSE OUTLINE
MATH 026 Algebra Transition Course

I. Basic Course Information

A. Course Number and Title: MATH026 - Algebra Transition Course
B. New or Modified Course: New
C. Date of Proposal: Semester: Fall Year: 2008
D. Sponsoring Department: Mathematics
E. Semester Credit Hours: 3 NC
F. Weekly Contact Hours: 6
Lecture: 4.5
Laboratory: 1.5
G. Prerequisites: MATH 023 Algebra Mod 2 – Linear Behavior
H. Laboratory Fees: No
I.
Name and Telephone Number or E-Mail Address of Department Chair: Patti
Hulsen,  phulsen@raritanval.edu

II. Catalog Description

Prerequisite: MATH023 Algebra Mod 2 – Linear Behavior. This course is designed
to provide students with the algebra skills and concepts necessary before taking
college-level mathematics. Students taking this course are majoring in programs
requiring non-math intensive courses. This course meets for seven weeks. Topics
include integer exponents, polynomial operations, factoring, solving equations in
quadratic form, operations with rational expressions, use of rational exponents,
solving rational equations, operations with radicals, and solving radical equations.

III. Statement of Course Need

This course is designed for students who are in a non-math intensive major and
who have completed MATH 023 – Algebra Mod 2 but not MATH025 - Algebra
Mod 4.

IV. Place of Course in College Curriculum

This is a developmental course and carries no college credit.

V. Outline of Course Content

A. Exponents
1. Natural number exponents
2. Integer exponents
3. Scientific notation

B. Polynomial operations
1. Addition
2. Subtraction
3. Multiplication
4. Division

C. Factoring
1. Greatest common factor
2. Factoring by grouping
3. Factoring by special polynomials
4. Factoring trinomials of the form ax^2 + bx + c

D. Solving quadratic equations
1. Factoring and square root method
2. Quadratic formula with real roots

E. Rational Expressions and Operations
1. Definition
2. Undefined Values
3. Simplifying by factoring
4. Multiplication and division
5. Least common multiple/denominator
6. Addition and subtraction
7. Mixed operations
8. Complex fractions

F. Radical Equations and Operations
1. Strategy for solving simple rational equations
2. Simplifying by identifying perfect roots
3. Addition and subtraction
4. Multiplication and division
5. Rationalization

VI. Educational Goals and Learning Outcomes

A. Educational Goals

This course addresses the following RVCC General Education Goals:
• Students will be able to produce works that demonstrate their ability to
move from the specific to the general, think abstractly about a situation,
and reconcile three different perspectives (symbolic, graphical, and
numerical) into a "connected whole." (Gen. Ed. Goal 1)
• Students will be able to demonstrate their ability reason quantitatively and
symbolically to solve problems. (Gen. Ed. Goal 7)

B. Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to
1. perform arithmetic operations on polynomial expressions and on
expressions that contain integer exponents.
2. factor polynomials using a variety of methods.
3. solve quadratic equations using the methods of factoring, square root, and
the quadratic formula.
4. perform arithmetic operations on exponential, rational, or radical
expressions.
5. solve equations involving rational expressions or radical expressions.
6. solve application problems using quadratic relationships, and algebraic
expressions and equations.

VII. Modes of Teaching and Learning

• lecture/discussion
• small-group work
• laboratory

VIII. Papers, Examinations, and other Assessment Instruments

• tests, quizzes, final examination
• laboratory products
• other

IX. Grade Determinants

• Cumulative, departmental final examination
• Chapter tests
• Lab grade
• Individual teacher determinants such as quizzes
The final exam will assess all the course outcomes listed above in Section VI.

X. Texts and Materials

• Suggested textbook: Beginning and Intermediate Algebra with
Applications and Visualization, Gary K. Rockswold & Terry A. Krieger.
Addison Wesley, 2005, ISBN 978-0321-20605-3.
(Please Note: The course outline is intended only as a guide to course content and
resources. Do not purchase textbooks based on this outline. The RVCC Bookstore is the
sole resource for the most up-to-date information about textbooks.)

XI. Resources

No unusual resources are needed.