College Algebra


  2. A. Course Title: College Algebra
    B. Course Number: MA 113 - 30261
    C. Semester: Fall 2017
    D. Days/Time: Online
    E. Credit Hours: 3
    F. Instructor: Schmitz, Charlotte
    G. Office: Heidel Hall (HH) 216
    H. Email Address:
    I. Office Phone: (575) 492-2817
    J. Office Hours: Monday: 8:30:00 AM-11:00:00 AM (MST);
    Tuesday: 8:00:00 AM-9:30:00 AM (MST);
    Wednesday: 8:30:00 AM-11:00:00 AM (MST);
    Thursday: 8:00:00 AM-9:30:00 AM (MST);
    Friday: 8:30:00 AM-10:30:00 AM (MST);
    Questions submitted Monday through Friday by 9:00 am will have a reply within 24 hours. Questions submitted over weekends or holidays will be answered by the end of next academic day. Note: Grades for regular coursework will update to Canvas daily. Grades for assessments will be posted within one week of deadline announced in class or in Canvas.
    K. Time Zone: Mountain Time
    L. Prerequisite(s): MA113A, or appropriate placement test score
    M. Corequisite(s):
    N. Class Location: Virtual

    This college algebra course is designed for pre-engineering, mathematics, and science majors. The subject matter covered in this class includes a brief review of Elementary and Intermediate Algebra topics, as well as a more extensive study of graphs of functions, complex numbers, theory of equations, matrices, determinants, conics, inverse functions, exponential functions, and logarithmic functions. This is a three credit hour course. Prerequisite: MA113A or equivalent or appropriate score on a placement test.


    This course is designed to be the foundation class for many more advanced math classes such as statistics, business analysis, and trigonometry.
    College Algebra should transfer to most colleges for mathematics credits.



    PRECALCULUS; Paul Sisson; Hawkes; Second Edition
    Textbook WITH courseware access: 978-1-941552-90-2

    DO NOT attempt to set up your account using Hawkes Learning website. You must connect through the link in Canvas to have access to your work.

    Note: Hawkes courseware comes with an automatic free trial period of 14 days. This temporary access starts on the first day of class and cannot be extended. Please plan for how to purchase the access code prior to the end of the trial period.

    This is a new text book and new online courseware. MyMathLab access codes from previous semesters will not work.

    Graphing Calculator- TI-83 or TI-84 are recommended


    You can buy your books online at the NMJC Bookstore.


    Students attending New Mexico Junior College will be evaluated according to the following grading scale:

    						90 - 100%	=	A
    						80 -  89%	=	B
    						70 -  79%	=	C
    						60 -  69%	=	D
    					 	 0 -  59%	=	F

    Warning: This course requires proctored exams.  Students are required to use an approved testing facility.  Read information regarding Assessments carefully.  Contact the instructor for additional information.

    For this course your grade will be made up of the following:

    HOMEWORK:                     15%   

    CHAPTER TESTS:             25%   

    ASSESSMENTS:                  60%   

    HOMEWORK is done online using Hawkes courseware.  It is accessed using the “Hawkes Single Sign On” module in Canvas.  Homework due dates can be viewed on the “To-Do” list in Hawkes.  Assignments can be accessed beyond the due date because minimum scores are required to progress.  Grades are reviewed weekly after a due date for assignments or tests.  Assignments not attempted before the deadline are posted as zeros in the grade book.  Zeros must be improved by catching up on the work.  Access to all homework ends on Monday of final exam week, no exceptions.  If an assignment is blocked please contact me immediately so I can check settings and fix problems.   

    Each homework assignment requires a mastery score of 80% to open the next assignment or test. 

    Hawkes provides a Learn, Practice, Certify system to earn scores.  In addition to Learn and Practice there will be notes and example problems presented in class and then posted in Canvas. 


    CHAPTER TESTS must also be done in Hawkes by clicking the “Tests” tab after opening the Single Sign On link.  Tests are timed.  Use the first attempt to gauge your knowledge of chapter material.  Then use the “Review” option (immediately following the test or from the grade book) to go over your mistakes and see correct answers in preparation for a second attempt.  Be sure there is time and good internet connection before starting a test.  Timing and loss of connection can result in loss of one or both attempts.  Contact me immediately if access to a test is lost.  Sometimes I can reopen a test and sometimes I can delete an attempt to free up access again.  After two attempts, if the required mastery score of 70 is not earned contact me.  I will want know what you believe the problem is and how you should use the previous attempts before I offer you additional options.  These things can be time consuming so be prepared and work ahead as much as possible.


    ASSESSMENTS must be taken on paper in an approved testing center and are NOT available in Hawkes.  Assessments are given twice during the semester.  The first one is to be taken after chapter 3 and then a set of final assessments are given during final exams or sooner if you complete the course work early.  “Final assessments” ARE the final exam broken into four separate parts: graphing, solving, notation and applications.  Reviews for each assessment are posted in Canvas in the last module.  Final Assessments are available through Wednesday of final exam week.  Notify your instructor of the testing center you will use before midterm.  If you live within driving distance of NMJC campus, you must use the NMJC testing center- no exceptions.  Driving distance is considered anywhere in Lea County or within 60 miles of Hobbs.

    Note: Grades for work completed in Hawkes will update to Canvas daily.  Grades for assessments will be posted within one week after the deadline announced in class or in Canvas.


    ·         Assessments make up 60% of the course grade and there is only one attempt on each.  Mastery scores required on Certifies and chapter tests will cause grades to appear good.  This could lead to a false sense of security.  Course work during the semester should lead to PROVING LEARNING on assessments.  Lack of preparation, fatigue, apathy, misunderstanding or any other reason for doing poorly on assessments dramatically decreases final grades.  Be practiced, be prepared and be confident before taking assessments.  (Simply put, the average score on assessments pretty much determines your course grade.)  You can sabotage your entire grade in the course by failing to prepare for the assessments. 

    ·         NMJC’s Academic Success Center employs tutors as an additional resource to help you LEARN.  They are happy to assist you while you work through “Practice”, but they will not help with “Certify” or with chapter tests (unless it is to help you understand mistakes after submitting an answer).  Also, they are extremely busy at the end of the semester.  There will be limits on the amount of time allowed with tutors.  The priority will be in helping students prepare for final exams.  They will NOT prioritize students who fell behind in their work and are trying to catch up at the last minute. 

    ·         Any incident of academic dishonesty on proctored exams will result in zeros on the entire set of assessments associated with the incident.







    Retrieving Grades from T-BirdWeb Portal
    Go to the New Mexico Junior College T-BirdWeb Portal login page. Please enter your User Identification Number (ID), which is your Banner ID, and your Personal Identification Number (PIN). When finished, click Login.

    Tips for Success in Online Courses:
    1. Log in to class regularly.
    2. Pay attention.
    3. Take notes.
    4. Keep up with readings and assignments.
    5. Ask questions when you do not understand something.
    6. Utilize your professor’s office hours and e-mail.
    7. Read the text.
    8. Adhere to the deadlines posted in the course outline.


    New Mexico Junior College’s institutional student learning outcomes represent the knowledge and abilities developed by students attending New Mexico Junior College. Upon completion students should achieve the following learning outcomes along with specific curriculum outcomes for respective areas of study:


    College Algebra (MA113) is designed to emphasize graphing functions, solving various equations, using functions and solving real world problems.

    The course content of College Algebra (MA113) supports NMJC’s mission of “promoting success through learning” by encouraging students to accomplish the following:

    ·         Graph various types of functions.  

    ·         Solve various types of equations. 

    ·         Use the necessary notation for each topic including showing work for sequences of simplifying expressions.  

    ·         Set up and solve various types of application problems. 

    ·         Apply each of the above skills as part of the critical thinking and problem solving process.




    A student who successfully completes College Algebra should be able to:

    ·         Use a graphing calculator to graph equations and solve problems.

    ·         Graph equations in the Cartesian plane.

    ·         Use a graphing utility to create models of data in the Cartesian plane.

    ·         Identify functions and write the equations in function form from either an equation or a graph.

    ·         Find the domain and range of functions.

    ·         Graph functions as well as their transformations.

    ·         Perform the algebra of functions.

    ·         Manipulate quadratic functions and make models on a graphing calculator.

    ·         Find the zeros of polynomial functions algebraically and graphically on a graphing calculator.

    ·         Perform arithmetic operations with complex numbers.

    ·         Apply the fundamental Theorem of Algebra.

    ·         Graph rational functions by using the important characteristics of rational functions.

    ·         Solve and graph exponential and logarithmic functions.

    ·         Find exponential and logarithmic models on a graphing calculator.

    ·         Solve linear systems of equations in two and three variables.

    ·         Solve systems of inequalities and linear programming problems.

    ·         Graph conic sections: the parabola, the ellipse, the circle, and the hyperbola.



    Student Requirements
    If you have not already received login information for Canvas/T-BirdWeb Portal/E-mail, you will need to contact the Enrollment Management office at (575) 492-2546.

    Check first-time login page for instructions at

    Canvas Assistance

    You must have access, on a regular basis, to a computer that supports the Canvas minimum specifications and has an active connection to the Internet. See the minimum computer specification requirements at


    GETTING STARTED:  Login to Canvas, complete course information quiz, connect to Hawkes course ware system and begin working on lessons.

    RESOURCES to successfully complete College Algebra: 

    ·        Work with your instructor as needed (by phone or online);

    ·        Go to the Academic Success Center to work with a tutor for homework help (NMJC Academic Success Center is located in room 123 Mansur Hall, phone number is 575-492-2624);

    ·        Use “Brainfuse”, an online tutoring service (click here to check out Brainfuse);

    ·        Communicate with your instructor about any problems regarding your success in class. 


    Ř  Participate in class- take notes while watching videos and ask questions.

    Ř  Abide by deadlines and requirements. 

    Ř  Do not use “Mathway” or other online problem solving apps.  Quick answers from using those things for progress through lessons and chapter tests come at a cost on assessments.  Maintaining an A on regular course work, but failing assessments will lead to a final grade of D or F. 

    This class will require consistent effort all semester.  Allowing yourself to fall behind will greatly increase probability of failure or need to withdraw.  Failing or withdrawing are a complete waste of your time and money.  If it gets stressful, be willing to make adjustments to your schedule and priorities.  Finishing a required class is a very temporary intrusion to your life.  Be realistic, consider how much you actually want to complete your education.  Do you really want to earn your way to a career with a high paying job or not?  Don’t sacrifice your greater life goals for things going on right now. 

    What will it take to earn credit for College Algebra?

    “To-Do-List” of 43 assignment scores:

    ·        33 lesson Certifies (separated into 33 Practices and 33 Certifies for a total of 66);

    ·        5 chapter tests;

    ·        1 mid-course assessment;

    ·        4 final assessments

    Calculation of reasonable time required for each of the above components of the course:

    Practice and Certify for each lesson @ approximately 1.5 hour each = 99 hours

    Chapter Tests @ about 2 hours each = 10 hours

    Mid-course Assessment prepare and complete = 3 hours

    Total prior to final assessments = 112 hours

    All this should fit into the first 14 weeks of class.  Allow for first week of “getting started” and we have 13 weeks- 112 hours / 13 weeks = 8.6 or about 9 hours per week. 

    Some weeks will take more some will take less to meet deadlines.  This is the reality of what it takes to meet the stated objectives which warrant credit hours on a degree plan or preparation for the next course. 

    If you know you cannot commit to this amount of work, consider changing your schedule before the refund period expires to avoid all waste of time and money.  (Refund period is through the first week of class only.  Check the academic calendar for the actual date and make a decision before then.)





    Students will be held responsible for the information on these pages.

    Academic Honesty
    Each student is expected to maintain the highest standards of honesty and integrity in online academic and professional matters. The College reserves the right to take disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, against any student who is found guilty of academic dishonesty or otherwise fails to meet these standards. Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, dishonesty in quizzes, tests, or assignments; claiming credit for work not done or done by others; and nondisclosure or misrepresentation in filling out applications or other College records. Cheating or gaining illegal information for any type of graded work is considered dishonest and will be dealt with accordingly.

    Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Information
    Any student requiring special accommodations should contact the Special Needs Student Services Coordinator at (575) 492-2576 or by e-mail at

    Attendance Policy and Participation Expectations
    It is expected that you regularly log into class at least three times weekly and check your Canvas mail to ensure you have not missed any changes/updates. Students are expected to complete discussions/quizzes/tests/ assignments before deadlines expire.

    Canvas Help
    If you experience difficulty with Canvas you may reach the Canvas Helpdesk at, or by calling the 24 hour helpdesk phone at (575) 399-2199.

    The professor is responsible for monitoring and evaluating student conduct and student behavior within the Canvas course. By registering for this class, the student is assumed to have entered into an agreement with New Mexico Junior College and the professor to log into the class regularly and to behave in an appropriate manner at all times. Disruptive behavior may result in the student being removed from the class and dropped for the semester. For comprehensive information on the common rules of netiquette and other online issues, please review the NMJC Online Student Handbook.

    Online Learning Environment
    By participating in an online class, you undertake responsibility for your own progress and time management.

    Offering the work of another as one’s own, without proper acknowledgment, is plagiarism; therefore, any student who fails to give credit for quotations or essentially identical expression of material taken from books, encyclopedias, magazines and other reference works, or from the themes, reports, or other writings of a fellow student, is guilty of plagiarism. Plagiarism violates the academic honesty policy and is considered cheating.

    Tutoring Assistance
    Free tutoring services are available to all NMJC students through Brainfuse and the Academic Success Center located at the Pannell Library on the 1st floor.

    Withdrawal Policy
    The instructor has the right to drop any student who has failed to log on to Canvas for two weeks or more, but it is not guaranteed that the instructor will drop you. If the student chooses to stop attending a class, he/she should withdraw from the class by accessing your student account in the T-Bird Web Portal at, or submitting the required paperwork to the Registrar’s Office by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 21, 2017. Failure to withdraw yourself from a course by this date may result in your receiving an “F” in the course. All students are encouraged to discuss their class status with the professor prior to withdrawing from the class.


    College Algebra Course Outline

    For Hawkes Precalculus book 


    This outline is tentative and subject to change at the discretion of the instructor.



    Section number and Title

    Day 1

    Course Introduction and syllabus discussion…

    Week 1

    Chapter 1

    Number Systems and Equations and Inequalities of one Variable

    1.3 Polynomials and Factoring (for review and preparation)

    1.4 The Complex Number System (for review and preparation)

    1.5 Linear Equations in One Variable

    Week 2

    1.6 Linear Inequalities in One Variable


    1.7 Quadratic Equations


    1.8 Rational and Radical Equations





    Week 3

    Chapter 2

    Introduction to Equations and Inequalities of Two Variables


    2.1 The Cartesian Coordinate System


    2.2 Linear Equations in Two Variables


    2.3 Forms of Linear Equations

    Week 4

    2.4 Parallel and Perpendicular Lines


    2.5 Linear Inequalties in Two Variables

    2.6 Introduction to Circles




    Week 5

    Chapter 3

    Relations, Functions, and Their Graphs


    3.1 Relations and Functions


    3.2 Linear and Quadratic Functions


    3.3 Other Common Functions

    Week 6

    3.4 Variation and Multivariable Functions

    3.5 Transformations of Functions

    3.6 Combining Functions

    Week 7

    3.7 Inverse Functions




    Week 8

    Mid-Course Assessment

    Proctored test, on paper, testing center required



    Week 9

    Chapter 4

    Polynomial Functions


    4.1 Introduction to Polynomial Equations and Graphs


    4.2 Polynomial Division and the Division Algorithm

    Week 10

    4.3 Locating Real Zeros of Polynomials


    4.4 The Fundamental Theorem of Algebra

    Week 11

    4.5 Rational Functions and Rational Inequalities



    Week 12

    Chapter 5

    Exponential and Logarithmic Functions

    5.1 Exponential Functions and Their Graphs

    5.2 Applications of Exponential Functions

    Week 13

    5.3 Logarithmic Functions and Their Graphs


    5.4 Properties and Applications of Logarithms


    5.5 Exponential and Logarithmic Equations




    Week 14

    Chapter 10

    Systems of Equations


    10.1 Solving Systems by Substitution and Elimination

    Chapter 9

    Conic Sections

    9.1 The Ellipse

    9.2 The Parabola

    9.3 The Hyperbola




    Week 15

    Review for final assessments





    Finals Week

    Final Assessments:

    All parts are proctored, on paper, given in testing center or classroom



    ·       Graphs



    ·       Solving



    ·       Notation



    ·       Applications



    All four part must be completed by the last day of finals