University-Level Courses for Students in Grades 7-12
For over 20 years University-Level Courses at the Institute for Mathematics and Computer Science (IMACS) have been providing advanced middle and high school students an outlet for their academic talents and an incredible head start over their peers upon entering college.
Our self-paced courses are praised by teachers and university professors for their technique and content and by former students for the profound advantage our courses gave them throughout their lives.
What Will My Child Learn?
IMACS offers two University-Level Courses, one in computer science and one in mathematics.
University Computer Science
The university-level computer science program at IMACS goes well beyond just learning to code. Our courses emphasize computational thinking by teaching students how to apply mathematical abstraction to concrete computer algorithms.
Rather than focusing narrowly on ideas relevant only to a specific coding environment, University Computer Science develops problem-solving skills that can be applied to any programming situation.
In addition to building a deep foundation in computer science, students who complete the entire University Computer Science curriculum gain significant experience in four diverse programming languages including Scheme, Haskell, Python and Java.
IMACS recommends the following sequence of university-level computer science courses:
- University Computer Science I: An introductory programming course that teaches core concepts in computer science and covers topics such as Boolean algebra, recursion, numeric algorithms, data structures, and object-oriented programming.
- University Computer Science II: An advanced programming course that builds on UCS1 with topics such as ordering/sorting algorithms, infinite lists, list comprehension, function abstraction, and artificial intelligence.
- AP® Computer Science: A comprehensive Java programming course leading to the Advanced Placement Computer Science exam. This course is qualified through the College Board's rigorous AP® Course Audit process.
IMACS computer science students develop the skills and tenacity to solve large, technically complex problems by learning how to break them down into smaller, sensible pieces. Consequently, they have significantly outperformed their peers at universities such as MIT, Stanford, Caltech, Yale, Penn and Johns Hopkins!
In fact, Ryan Newton, a graduate of our Computer Science program was accepted to the University of Indiana where he was exempted from all undergraduate computer science classes!
The university-level mathematics program at IMACS is designed for middle and high school students with a natural talent for mathematics, a high degree of self-discipline, and a strong motivation to learn.
University Mathematics courses are based on the IMACS Elements of Mathematics textbooks, which were developed by an international team of eminent mathematicians and mathematics educators to be both rigorous and engaging for young students.
The curriculum begins with topics covered in the logic courses typically required of a college major in mathematics, engineering, computer science or philosophy. It then goes on to introduce more advanced techniques in mathematical logic and reasoning.
IMACS students take University Mathematics courses in the following sequence:
- Logic for Mathematics I: An introduction to propositional logic, a branch of modern mathematics that provides the foundation for formal and rigorous mathematical proofs.
- Logic for Mathematics II: An introduction to predicate logic, a so-called "first-order logic" sufficient to formalize all of set theory, which provides the basic language in which most mathematical texts are written.
- Logic for Mathematics III: An introduction to axiomatic set theory, which plays a central role in modern mathematics and is fundamental to understanding math at its most sophisticated levels.
- Logic for Mathematics IV: After making the transition from demonstrations to paragraph proofs, conducts an in-depth study of relations, mappings and functions and considers the Axiom of Choice.
Students who successfully complete the entire University Mathematics curriculum develop superior abstract reasoning abilities that make all future classes requiring critical thinking — from computer science to engineering to philosophy to pre-law — significantly easier.
One of our graduates, Scott Caplan, completed our university-level classes in Real Analysis, Linear Algebra and Group Theory. He was heavily recruited by all of the top universities and finally settled on Yale.
“In my first year at Yale everybody in my dorm was asking me questions about math proofs that seemed to me to be completely routine. Thank you IMACS for giving me such great preparation in college!”
Are IMACS University-Level Course Right for my Child
Many students enroll in our university-level courses because, regardless of age, they are ready for an academic challenge suited to their advanced abilities. Traditional schools often lack the resources or flexibility to meet the intellectual needs of these talented, young children.
IMACS university-level courses provide an academic challenge worthy of the brightest students. Your child will truly take pride in his or her ability to solve advanced logic and math problems.
When a student completes a course, IMACS provides an official transcript that reports the student's final grade along with a detailed description of the course content. For those who do well in our program, we provide strong, individually tailored letters of recommendations for college applications.
In third grade Jennifer Hernandez began working her way through IMACS courses. While just a sophomore in high school she scored a perfect 800 on the SAT Math test. She eventually graduated valedictorian of her class and was accepted to MIT, Duke and a variety of other universities.
The educational foundations students build at IMACS help them outperform the expectations of their parents, teachers and professors.
For the rest of their lives, whether in school, at work or at play, IMACS graduates simply think better.
Visit IMACS for a Free Evaluation
Students in grade 7 and above who have mathematical talent and a genuine interest in mathematics or computer science may be ready for IMACS University-Level Courses.
We provide a one-hour aptitude test to assess a student's suitability for IMACS University-Level courses. Contact IMACS for additional information and Aptitude Test dates.