Education Technology

Calculus with the TI-89

Published on 08/13/2005

Activity Overview

In this Computer Algebra System (CAS) activity, students will explore the concept of limits of functions, and use CAS to demonstrate the definition of derivative.

Before the Activity

  • Connect the CBR 2™ and CBL 2™ to the calculator
  • Install TI Connect™ using the TI connectivity cable
  • See the attached PDF file for detailed instructions for this activity
  • Print pages 1 - 6 from the attached PDF file for the class
  • During the Activity

    Distribute the pages to the class.

    Follow the Activity procedures:

  • Explore the concept of the limit of a function f(x) as x approaches zero, infinity, or any other arbitrary value
  • Investigate the horizontal and vertical asymptotes of a rational function; graphically, numerically, and symbolically
  • Examine other important limits


  • Use the CBL™/CBR™ to collect distance data
  • Analyze the distance-time and velocity-time graphs using the calculator programs
  • Find the relationship between distance and time graphs


  • Understand that CAS can be used to demonstrate the definition of the derivative using the difference quotient
  • Visualize the area under a curve using Riemann sums


  • Model data using the logistic equation, study slopefields, and approximate the solution using Euler's method or the Runge-Kutta method
  • Use the deSolve command to obtain an analytical solution
  • After the Activity

    Students answer questions on the Activity sheet.

    Review student results:

  • As a class, discuss questions that appeared to be more challenging
  • Re-teach concepts as necessary