Calculator Policy in First-year Mathematics

Policy for Math 105L/106L Laboratory Calculus and Function I and II; Math 111L/112L Laboratory Calculus I and II

Generally we recommend students use a TI-83 or TI-83+ or TI-84 calculator in the "L" courses. The reasons for this recommendation are because:

  1. The teachers and lab instructors work with the TI-83. If at any time you need technical support, the lab assistants may not be able to assist if you are using a calculator other than those listed above.
  2. Many students who use a calculator other than those listed above have run into some difficulty when their calculator is unable to or does not have the capability to perform what is needed for the labs.
Banned Machines

For the final exam in the "L" courses, you CANNOT use machines capable of performing symbolic operations in calculus (e.g. TI-89, TI-92, and laptop computers).

Exceptions and Other Considerations

If you want to use a different calculator, you must let your teacher or lab instructor know and you need to make sure it's not one of the calculators which are banned from major tests (see above).

If you already own another calculator which you know how to use well – that has been approved by your teacher or lab instructor and is not one of the banned machines (see above) – you can use it as long as you don't expect technical support.

Sometimes an individual teacher or lab instructor may make a change to these general policies (e.g some have experimented with the use of laptops in calculus labs); however, in general laptops are NOT allowed on exams and students are not required to have their own laptops.

Policy for Math 212 Multivariable Calculus

In MATH 212 Multivariable Calculus the policy with regard to calculators may vary slightly depending on the particular faculty member teaching the course in any given semester. In most cases though, the use of either calculators or computers is NOT allowed on exams.


Some teachers may allow calculators on their individual tests. In such cases, a basic calculator that computes powers roots, logarithms, and trig functions will be sufficient