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**Choosing between
Math 140ab and Math 142ab: a guide**

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Background: Math majors are required to take either
Math 140ab or Math 142ab. This
guide is intended to help students decide which one to take. (Note that credit cannot be given for
both.) Both Math 140ab or Math
142ab provide an introduction to real analysis, but the Math 140 sequence
emphasizes theory and proofs more heavily. Math 140ab at UCSD corresponds to an honors sequence at some
other universities. Math 140abc and Math 100abc are regarded as the most
challenging undergraduate math courses given at UCSD. Students who are planning to apply to graduate
programs in mathematics are advised to take Math 140a rather than 142a, but
this is not a firm rule.

Reasons to take Math 140a:

1. It is one of the most exciting and challenging math courses
you will encounter.

2. You have done well in all your previous math courses and
want to understand things more deeply.

3. You are tired of being in the top 5% of your math classes or tired of getting A or A+.

4. You are prepared to work very hard, although you have found
math courses not so hard in the past.

Reasons not to take Math 140a:

1.
It is one of the most exciting and challenging math courses
you will encounter.

2.
You have not done well in some of your previous math courses
(C or lower) and, in particular, found Math 109 a bit challenging (lower than
B+).

3.
You are tired of being in the bottom 50% of your math classes or tire of getting C and Fs. (By the way, I never give Ds. For anything below C, I assign an F without hesitation.)

4. You have a heavy schedule this quarter and are not prepared
to spend many hours on problem sets.