MATH 141

Welcome to the homepage for McGill MATH 141 Calculus 2 taught by Bogdan Lucian Nica (May / Spring 2017) at Jacob’s Math Help Desk!

Register for MATH 141 Sessions

N.B. An email with instructions for confirming your registration will be sent to the address provided above shortly after submission. If you have any issues, contact Jacob @

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About the Weekly Sessions for McGill MATH 141 (May / Spring 2017)

The weekly sessions for Math 141 are 2h, small-group, sessions that will help you master the concepts and theory presented in the course lectures. They include detailed, typeset notes that explain the terminology and notation. The notes are carefully designed as interactive documents that provide you with a chance to engage the material during the session so you can test your understanding, and also include representative, fully solved problems and additional practice problems.

During the session we will look at  detailed, developed solutions, meant to illustrate different aspects of the material in a systematic, structured and easy-to-follow approach. Solutions are colour-coded to make it easy for you to see through the barrage of symbols and focus on the key concepts. It’ll also help you learn to structure your answers efficiently and effectively, so that the logic of the solution is clear to you (and the marker!).

The sessions are also designed with a view of the entire course in mind with the goal of helping students know where to invest their time both in terms of success in this class, as well as in terms of the topics that will have the greatest application outside of this course.

In general, students attend weekly tutorials for a variety of reasons including:

  • Time Management: although able to learn and understand the material on their own, many students attend the weekly tutorials because it is the best use of their time. The notorious difficulty of McGill classes is not inherent to the content itself; rather, it is the sheer volume of material which makes the classes difficult. Better to spend 2h in a weekly session that will help you really understand the concepts and complete assignments yourself than to spend 8-10+h banging your head against the textbook and trying to decipher online resources only to get answers that don’t really make much sense to you, and have it haunt you later in the semester when you’ve got 4 other classes to study for.
  • Maintaing Commitment: despite the best of intentions to keep up with material and not use Uncle Wolfram for Webworks, McGill & Montreal have their way of always offering up absolutely, totally, 100% legitimate reasons that derail the best laid plans. So you make a financial commitment to a weekly session that helps you reach your goal. It’s like the gym-membership model: you can workout on your own, but it’s a lot easier to reach your goals when you surround yourself with others who are working towards the same end. Knowing that you need help to reach a goal (& acting on it!) is knowing how to find the success you want.
  • Math Therapy: I believe that anyone who wants to learn math, can. If you feel you’re terrible or hopeless at math, or just don’t enjoy it, there’s probably a list of bad math teachers somewhere in your past that would go a long way to explaining the difficulties you have, & no one wants to spend their time feeling like they just can’t get it. However, if you’re motivated and willing to do the work and practice, then you can definitely succeed. I’ve seen it hundreds of times: students go from failing in a fantastically impressive way to acing the class. The weekly tutorials will go a long way to rehabilitating your relationship with math. Whatever your level, I want to help you reach your goals in this course – there’s so much more to gain than just a good grade in rising to the challenge.
  • Top of the Class: many students who attend the weekly Mastery Lectures don’t want to just pass the class, they want to understand the material at an intuitive level, &nd they want to ace the class. The weekly lectures provide a wealth of information that help you develop general, transferable skills in mathematical literacy and reasoning, and I work hard to help students do their very best (and many have both aced their classes and finished very top of the class).

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Cost & Payment Structure for Weekly Mastery Lectures

If you have never attended one of my sessions previously, you can check out a Weekly Mastery Lecture for only $20. Simply register using the contact form above, or get in touch with me at – you’ll be glad you did!

  • Full 7-Week Membership: prepay for the entire set of 6 sessions and get the best price for the Math 141 sessions: $240 for everything you need to master the material and succeed in your class. Early-bird Discount: register before 1pm, Tuesday May 9th, 2017 and save any additional $30: only $210 for complete weekly membership!

    Included in the weekly membership: not only the weekly lectures, but detailed notes at every session (6-16 pages, 9pt, colour-coded), and priority registration (as well as discounted rates!) for WebWork Workshops, Midterm Review and Final Mastery Sessions.

    My goal in offering this lowest price is to encourage you to join the sessions early, so that you can establish a strong foundation right from the start so you’ll be less stressed for the final and do better in the class, overall: take advantage & register right away!

  • Prepay (min.) 4 Sessions: $220, includes notes and all other benefits of weekly membership. There is always the option of getting the notes from previous tutorials, sutdents can contact me at for exact prices. The same benefits as the 6-week membership also apply. For complete details, get in touch using the contact form or contact
  • Individual Sessions: $65/session, subject to space. Cancellations must be made min. 48h prior to the session. For additional information, get in touch using the contact form, above.

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Everything You Need to Know About Mcgill MATH 141: The Long View

This is one of my favourite courses to teach: it is a first taste of integral calculus and the clever extension of the core concept of calculus (viz. that straight lines can be used to approximate curved lines over relatively short distances), and when presented properly, can be both intuitive and even enjoyable (yes, actually!).

As with many other McGill math classes, the challenge is that the pacing of the class doesn’t reflect the relative importance of topics, and students have little-to-no sense of what is to come later in the semester. As such, although they may not be totally confident about the various methods of integration, they figure they’ll be able to iron out the details later on in the class because, for the first half of the class, it seems like all that will be covered are various methods of integration. Unfortunately, methods of integartion are only the starting point, and it’s important to completely master them early on.

After the methods of integration are introduced (by inspection; u-sub; by-parts; trig-integrals; trig-subs and partial fractions), advanced problems will require the combined use of multiple methods. Next, the course will look at applications of the integral to volumes of revolution; calculating bounded areas; arc-length; surface area; continuous, weighted averages and then all of these topics will be seen not only in familiar Cartesian coordinates, but also in a new coordinate system called Polar Coordinates, as well as a new form for describing curves called Parametric Functions. In all of these topics, the ability to integrate any expression is the last step and should be, ideally, taken for granted.

&nd the class doesn’t end there! After blitzing all of the above, students (who, by now, are starting to get a little nervous) are blind-sided by the incredibly important topics of Infinite Sequences and Infinite Series, which can appear to have no relation to the earlier material whatsoever and represent a substantial amount of material on their own; material that will form the starting point for Math 222, Math 262 and play an important role in Math 263, Math 314 and Math 315.

Whether or not you plan to join the Mastery Lectures, if you want to succeed in this class, it is critical that you master each topic as it is presented and that you revisit earlier material throughout the term so that when the most challenging material arrives at the end of the class, you can give it your full attention without worrying about ironing out the details of earlier material before the final. In the weekly sessions, I’ll incorporate regular review of earlier material throughout the entire semester and push you to master the material throughout the entire semester so that when the final exam arrives, you’ll feel confident in your ability to succeed.

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Upcoming Sessions for McGill MATH 141 Calculus 2 (May / Spring 2017):

The first group is always scheduled on the weekend, generally at the same time every week, on campus in McLennan Library. Once there are enough students for a second group, it will be scheduled during the week.

No upcoming events


 What others are saying about our sessions:

Finding the right teacher is really important, but it’s not easy to know what to expect. Here are some unsolicited comments from recent students in MATH 141 at McGill. You can find more reviews from past students on the tutorials page. Ask around: we work hard to make sure that all of our students do the best they can!

“I know most people are probably Grieve-ing for their grades right now but I found the final difficult but manageable.

Just wanted so say thanks for the help this semester with ODES. The emphasis you put on theory was extremely useful for this class especially on the final.

Thanks again Bro-dry for the time and effort you put into the sessions and I’ll definitely recommend you to anyone looking for a math tutor. Also quiz apparently went better than I originally thought: I got 100%!”

– Laurent G.

“Thanks again for all the work you’re putting into these tutorials. It’s really making a difference as far as learning and really understanding the material goes … Jacob is an excellent instructor. He takes care to ensure we truly understand the material and can derive the equations needed on our own.

His sessions are clear, concise, and engaging, much better than any materials supplied by the professors or math texts.

I highly recommend him to anyone having issues intuitively understanding the materials in class.”

  – Zachary K.

“Just wanted to keep you updated as you asked about my grade! I ended up getting an A- which I am extremely happy about so thank you again so much for your help, would have never been able to do so well without it!”

  – Cassie E.

“Got an A! Thanks for the help I’m so relieved woooooow!”

  – J. Arnette

“Comparing my Calc 1 results (C) and Calc 2 results (B+) all I can say is you saved by butt! and I am very grateful for that. Thank you!!!!”

  – Dana M.

“I passed. Literally almost threw my computer in the air I was so relieved. I’m pumped – Thanks so much.”

  – A. Singh

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  1. Hey everyone! I know I mentioned during our study session yesterday but I booked the usual room for review for today (friday) m3-37a! I booked the room until five so come on by!

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