Texas Instruments have some of the best scientific calculators for students, such as TI 30X IIS Vs TI 36X Pro. These calculators have all the essential features and are affordable, so you don’t have to invest much. However, they are also different, and you may like one better. Today we will see what to expect from the two, the differences, and which fits you best.

In this comparison, we will talk about the following:

  • When Students Need a Scientific Calculator
  • What are TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro
  • How is the Design of TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro
  • How is the Display on TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro
  • What are the Features of TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro
  • How are the Apps in TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro
  • TI 30X IIS Vs TI36X Pro

Scientific Calculators

Calculators are handy tools for students and professionals. While children are not encouraged to use a calculator in class to develop their skills and mentality, the tool will come in handy in higher classes where they already master the basics. Teachers may require students to use a calculator when teaching algebra and statistics. The graphing model is similar to scientific calculators but can plot coordinates. Students can use online or calculator apps, but these options are prohibited during standardized tests, which may still allow calculators.

TI 30X IISTI 36X Pro
Product Dimensions9.65 x 6.73 x 0.83 inches
6.1 x 3.23 x 0.75 inches
Shipping Weight6 ounces
4 ounces
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About TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro

Calculator usage in class starts with a basic scientific calculator. Scientific calculators can do the basic mathematical functions but are more capable, making them handy for other fields like trigonometry, physics, chemistry, and engineering. Graphing calculators like TI Nspire CX II-T Vs TI84 Plus CE are essentially scientific calculators with graphing functions, making them more capable. It is almost impossible talking about calculators without mentioning Texas Instruments because this brand has been around for decades and is often used by teachers in classes.

Texas Instruments have many calculators in different segments, but primarily focusing on the educational field or students. The TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro are some essential options for students needing scientific calculators. You don’t need to spend much on these calculators because they are affordable but may not last very long, depending on your future education; you may need a more powerful tool. These calculators have all essential features and even look similar. As the name suggests, the 36X Pro is a higher model.

The TI36X Pro is a scientific calculator with a familiar layout and feature that offers more. Thanks to the menus and apps, this calculator has some features that you may only find in a graphing calculator. Still, those doing math from algebra 2 or higher may want to invest in a graphing calculator so you don’t have to buy another one shortly. The TI 30X IIS is a more straightforward option ideal for late elementary and middle school classes.

TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro Design

Like most calculators, the material is plastic which is good because it makes the calculators light. As you can see, the design is quite different as the 30X IIS has a wide top and slimmer layout, while the 36X Pro has a curvy shape with round edges. These calculators have a solar panel to power the unit. Both calculators also come with a cover. The 30X IIS has four tiny feet but is still slippery, which is not the case with 36X Pro.

TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro Display

The first part we want to discuss is the display which is pretty wide for a typical scientific calculator. However, the TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro are different starting from how they show the calculation. The TI36X Pro can show three stacks simultaneously instead of two in 30X IIS. As expected, you can type the formula at the top, and 30X IIS will show the answer at the second layer. The 36X Pro displays the answer on the right or at the bottom if there is not enough space left.

TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro Features

The next major difference is the features, as you will see how these calculators write and show the answers. The 36X Pro has a Mathprint which is, unfortunately, missing from the 30X IIS. This feature is pretty standard and handy in modern calculators as it allows you to type and receive the answer in the same form that you see on paper or manually done by hand. Instead of typing (2+√(3))÷(5^2), you can type in 2+352, making the writing process and understanding the problem far easier.

In addition, the TI36X Pro also has exact numbers as an answer, so it can output answers in fractional or simplified radical form. This feature is active by default and handy if you need to simplify a radical or work on a problem requiring the exact number answer.

TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro Apps

As mentioned above, the TI36X Pro is similar to a graphing calculator because it has the features you commonly see in one. This calculator has many templates for derivatives and definite and indefinite integrals. The TI36X Pro also has three handy apps for algebra and algebra 2. The first app is a numeric solver, similar to the app in TI-84. Students can use this app to type any algebraic equation with one variable and the calculator to solve it. The second app is a polynomial solver.

This app solves the roots of a polynomial with exponents up to 3, and the last is a system solver. A system solver is an app for you to input a system of equations and gets the point at which they intersect. Additionally, the 36X Pro has a table key where you can enter an equation. Students can use this app to enter a function and scroll through all the X and Y coordinates in the table. This feature is similar to a graphing calculator without the ability to draw lines.

TI 30X IIS Vs TI36X Pro

If you have read up to this part, we believe the best option between TI 30X IIS and TI36X Pro is already apparent. These calculators can do many other things, but these factors are the significant differences. While both options have all the essential functionalities of a scientific calculator, the TI36X Pro is easier to use and has more handy features. What makes the 36X Pro even more attractive is that this model is still very affordable at around $20.

- Robust, professional grade scientific calculator. Logs and antilogs
- It has 2-line display shows entry and calculated result at same time
- Easily handles 1 and 2 variable statistical calculations and three angle modes (degrees, radians, and grads) and scientific and engineering Falsetation modes
- Solar and battery powered
- Ideal for curricula in which graphing technology may not be permitted.
- MultiView display shows multiple calculations at the same time on screen.
- MathPrint shows math expressions, symbols and stacked fractions as they appear in textbooks
- Ideal for high school through college: Algebra 1 & 2, Geometry, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus, Biology, etc.


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The decision is yours because not everyone has the same preference, but we recommend the TI36X Pro. This calculator is affordable, has a better interface, is easy to use, and has more features for a student looking to buy a reliable scientific calculator. Thanks to the additional features, you may be able to use the calculator for longer than TI 30X IIS.

TI 30X IIS Vs TI 36X Pro

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