The Texas Instruments TI-30Xa should be sufficient for all High School, and even college work. At the time we wrote this web page it was available online for under $12.00.
If your student is gifted technologically, then it's OK to buy them a fancy calculator that does all sorts of amazing things, but for most students, the simpler it is, the easier it will be to use.
A basic scientific calculator should be able to:
- Multiply, divide, subtract and add.
- Square roots
- Sine, cosine and tangent and their inverses
The Texas Instruments TI-30Xa that we recommended can do all of these things.
Test your ability to use your calculator
See if you can work this out on your calculator. It seems simple, but have a go with your own calculator.
The answer you should get is 6.05 x 10-19 to 3 significant figures.