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Differential calculus is a subset of calculus involving differentiation (that is, finding derivatives). It is often contrasted with integral calculus, and shouldn't be confused with differential equations. Topics covered include maxima and minima, optimization, and related rates.

In high school or college calculus courses, it is typically covered in the first of a two- or three-semester sequence, along with limits. Differentiation in higher dimensions — including partial derivatives — is sometimes begun in the first semester, but usually is studied in the second or third semester of the calculus sequence.

Topic

Topics concerned with differential calculus are listed below: