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Calculators – what are the different types of calculator?

Types of calculator

If you look on the internet or even on your local High Street, you’ll find that there’s a huge range of calculators available, costing from just a couple of pounds up to hundreds of pounds. So, which one is right for you or your child? What are the different types of calculator?

Here’s a basic summary of the types of calculator around, and who might want them

 Basic calculator

 What does it do?

  • Add
  • Subtract
  • Multiply
  • Divide
  • Percentages
  • Square roots
  • Simple memory function

 Suitable for:

  • Primary school age children
  • General use around the home

 Scientific calculator

 What does it do?

  • Combinations
  • Coordinate conversion
  • Degrees
  • Degrees/minutes/seconds
  • Exponential regression
  • Exponents
  • Expression editing
  • Factorials
  • FIX/SCI/NORM
  • Fractions
  • Gradians
  • Hyperbolics
  • Inverse regression
  • Linear regression
  • Logarithm
  • Logarithmic regression
  • Negative Indicator
  • Permutations
  • Power regression
  • Quadratic regression
  • Radians
  • Random numbers
  • Reciprocals
  • Roots & powers
  • Standard deviation
  • Table of a function
  • Trigonometrics (SIN/COS/TAN)
  • Multi-replay

 Suitable for:

  • Secondary school onwards

 Graphic calculator

 What does it do?

  • Angle measurements(DEG/RAD/GRA)
  • Bar chart
  • Combinations (nCr) & permutations (nPr)
  • Complex numbers
  • Confidence intervals (Z & T)
  • DEC/HEX/BIN/OCT conversions
  • Distribution Tests (Z, t, chi, ANOVA)
  • Distributions (NORM/T/CHI/Fbinomial/poisson)
  • Dynamic graphing
  • FIX/SCI/NORM
  • Fractions
  • Graphing
  • Hyperbolic / Inverse Hyperbolic
  • Inequality
  • Logic Operations
  • No. of Regression Types 10
  • Numeric Equation Solver
  • Parametric
  • Parenthesis levels 26
  • Pie chart
  • Polar
  • Random numbers
  • Rectangular
  • Roots & powers
  • Single and double variable
  • Statistical calculations
  • TVM – Financial Calculations

 

Suitable for:

  • Secondary school onwards

Some models of graphic calculator are allowed into GCSE and A Level exams, others are not. Check current rules for the relevant examining organisation before you buy, if you want a calculator to take into exams.

For GCSE and A Level exams, a Scientific calculator is all that is necessary, although a Graphic calculator may be a useful extra.

 Financial calculator

What does it do?

  •  Amortization
  • Cash flow (Investment Appraisal)
  • Compound Interest Calcualtions
  • Conversions
  • Cost sell margin and day calculations
  • Exponential regression
  • Full scientific functions
  • Linear regression
  • Logarithmic regression
  • Multi replay
  • Quadratic regression
  • Simple and compound interest
  • Time-Value-Money calculations

Suitable for:

  • Anyone studying financial management

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