Two free, open calculus texts for specialized audiences

If you are teaching a class titled something like “Business Calculus” or “Calculus for the Biological Sciences” anytime soon, this post is for you.

Mike May and Anneke Bart of Saint Louis University have an excellent text for business calculus, Business Calculus with Excel. Endorsed by the AIM Open Textbook Initiative, the text follows MAA recommendations for such courses, the text offers resources that include a collection of Excel worksheets. Learn more at the book’s landing page.

Jeff Shriner of Colorado State University has developed a new textbook titled Calculus for Biological Sciences that builds upon the source code for Active Calculus. The book focuses on dynamical systems in a one-semester course serving life science majors. In addition to adding considerable new material, Jeff’s work includes embedded Desmos interactives, including a full suite for instructors in the “Instructors: Read This” section that he uses as in-class group activities throughout the semester. There are also WeBWorK .def files that align with the text that are available upon request (Jeffrey.Shriner at colostate dot edu).

These books are two great examples of the growing collection of excellent resources available for calculus instructors, ones that leverage the PreTeXt environment and provide interactive activities for students.

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