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Concord Academy

Letter from the Mathematics Department Head

April 2016

Dear New Student:

The Mathematics Department welcomes you to Concord Academy! We hope you will find our program exciting, challenging, and fun. You can find a description of Concord Academy’s mathematics courses and program requirements in the 2016–17 course catalog.

We require two forms from you by May 11: the mathematics questionnaire and the mathematics placement test.

The questionnaire contains a checklist on which to indicate to us the topics you have already studied in math or will have studied by the end of this school year. It is best if you and your teacher fill it out together.

We use the mathematics placement test as an important tool, along with your transcript, SSAT quantitative score, and questionnaire, to place you in an appropriate mathematics course. The test is used to place all incoming students, and therefore younger students are not expected to complete much more than the first few pages. Please print out the test and take it seriously, carefully following these instructions:

  • Spend no more than an hour reviewing before you start.
  • Work alone and without a calculator.
  • Look at the entire test, and try every problem that seems at all familiar.
  • Show work on every problem you answer.

 

Common placements for new ninth graders are:

Algebra 1 (fall) and Intermediate Algebra (spring) for those with either little prior exposure to algebra 1 topics or with little retention of that content.

Intermediate Algebra (fall) and Geometry Part 1 (spring) for those with some exposure to algebra 1 but without mastery of the full year’s content.

Geometry Part 1 (fall) and Geometry Part 2 (spring) for those exhibiting a strong grasp of the full-year algebra 1 topics.

Those who have completed one year of algebra and a full year of axiomatic geometry will likely start with one of the following curricula:

Accelerated Algebra 2 (fall) and Accelerated Trigonometry (spring) for those with strong grades, high retention, a high SSAT quantitative score, and comfort working at a fast pace.

Algebra 2 (fall) and Statistics (spring) for others.

 

After studying the course catalog descriptions, you should request the mathematics courses you think are appropriate. We will use your requests in conjunction with the questionnaire and placement test to register you for courses, adjusting your requests when we feel it is appropriate. We sometimes make additional changes in the fall, where necessary.

Returning the completed placement test along with your questionnaire and other registration materials by May 11 is essential to avoiding a delay in scheduling your courses. Please return the test by this date even if your school year has not yet finished.

 

A note on calculators:  All students are required to have graphing calculators. While many brands and models are available, we strongly encourage you to have a calculator from the Texas Instruments TI‑83/84 line.

 

If you and your family have any questions about the mathematics courses or your placement, please email me at mark_engerman@concordacademy.org. I look forward to meeting you in the fall!

Sincerely,

Mark Engerman
Mathematics Department Head