calcPad Questions

Use the calcPad® tool to enter a correctly formatted math expression. calcPad is not enabled for all questions. calcPad is intended for pre-calculus and higher math courses.
calcPad question with palette displayed.
  1. Click the answer box to open the calcPad tool.

    Don't use the keyboard to navigate to the answer box.

  2. Use the calcPad buttons or type to answer the question.
    • calcPad buttons are organized in expandable groups, such as Operations and Trig.
    • Some buttons insert placeholder boxes to show you where you can type numbers, variables, or expressions.

      For example, if you insert a fraction, placeholder boxes are displayed for both the numerator and denominator.

    The expression is displayed in the answer box as you enter it. If necessary, the answer box becomes larger to fit your answer.

    To do this Do this

    Enter variables.

    Type the variable name using the case and spelling specified in the question. Variables are automatically italicized.

    Enter symbols like π or .

    Click Symbols and click the symbol.

    Move the insertion point in the answer box.

    Press the HOME, END, and arrow keys.

    Move the insertion point into or out of a placeholder box.

    Press the arrow keys or use the mouse.

    Note Usually the insertion point is automatically moved to a placeholder box when it is created.

    Delete a character, the selected expression, or notation such as fractions.


    If you have trouble typing your answer, try using the pad buttons.

    • Answers are case-sensitive; x and X are not the same.
    • Do not type commas in numbers; 5,280 is not correct.
    • Use the pad button when entering fractions between commas (for example, fractions in a list). This notation can be typed, but not intuitively. See the examples for details.
    • Do not enter mixed numbers, for example, 2½. Instead, use decimals or improper fractions.
    • When entering scientific notation, always use a lowercase e and an integer exponent, for example, 1.23e-5.
    • Unless instructed otherwise, express angles for trigonometric functions in radians.
    • Keyboard characters that are not mathematically useful — for example, &, @, and foreign language characters — are intentionally not displayed when typed. To enter Greek characters, use the buttons or keyboard shortcuts for the tool.
    • Do not use function notation — for example, f(x) — as these answers can't be graded.
    • Do not round your answer unless the questions instructs you to.