Turn on thread page Beta

Our Fixation with Maths doesn't Add Up watch

    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    ..
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    At first I thought this was more league table nonsense, then I kept reading and my disgust grew exponentially, boycotting the guardian from now on, feel sick to my core


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Mathemagicien)
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentis...add-up-targets

    I was so disgusted by this article that I thought I'd share it

    What an idiot.

    I tried to find something I agreed with in all of that, but no.
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    I don't really disagree with any of it.

    Most a-level maths is useless. Pure maths at degree level too has very few practical applications insofar as societal development goes.
    Offline

    19
    ReputationRep:
    Ah, Simon Jenkins, the man who famously declared geopgrahy to be queen of sciences. I stopped reading anything by him years ago because the guy always writes absolute drivel.

    (Original post by drandy76)
    At first I thought this was more league table nonsense, then I kept reading and my disgust grew exponentially, boycotting the guardian from now on, feel sick to my core


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    I take it you will also be boycotting The Times, The Telegraph, The Daily Mail, The Evening Standard, The Spectator and the Huffington Post. He has written equal turgid pieces for those publications. The guy gets about even though I can't fathom why anyone would employ him.
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Quantex)
    Ah, Simon Jenkins, the man who famously declared geopgrahy to be queen of sciences. I stopped reading anything by him years ago because the guy always writes absolute drivel.



    I take it you will also be boycotting The Times, The Telegraph, The Daily Mail, The Evening Standard, The Spectator and the Huffington Post. He has written equal turgid pieces for those publications. The guy gets about even though I can't fathom why anyone would employ him.
    It appears so, looks like it's just The sun left, joy


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Offline

    19
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by drandy76)
    It appears so, looks like it's just The sun left, joy


    Posted from TSR Mobile
    It's not quite that bad, you've still got The Sunday Sport, a paper that talks less crap than Simon Jenkins...


    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Mathemagicien)
    You reached your limit, eh?

    I really do wonder if the Guardian is becoming a satirical newspaper, like the Onion. At least, I hope they are only joking.



    People like him will be the death of humanity

    He doesn't even know the area of a circle! Nor how to take an average! Shows you the quality of Grauniad journalism
    He must be doing it just to be controversial....because seriously?!

    I need to visit the comments section if there is one....
    • Community Assistant
    • Very Important Poster
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    Community Assistant
    Very Important Poster
    I wouldn't say we're fixated upon maths given we're so bad at it.
    Online

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Mathemagicien)
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentis...add-up-targets

    I was so disgusted by this article that I thought I'd share it
    maths is the only remaining bastion of rigorous thinking in schools. all the other subjects have been turned into a thin gruel of self expression and easily digestible factoids about so called global warming. despite regular attempts by the loony left to dilute the maths curriculum it still stands proud; a flinty monolith amidst a sea of lukewarm half truths.

    :hat2:
    Online

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Quantex)
    It's not quite that bad, you've still got The Sunday Sport, a paper that talks less crap than Simon Jenkins...



    :congrats:

    you win today's internet
    • TSR Support Team
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    TSR Support Team
    I do actually agree with most of this article. It is true, particularly with respect to international league tables, that Mathematics is heralded as the pinnacle measure of education and I absolutely do not agree that this should be the case. Towards the end he makes a point which I think probably has a lot of truth to it - "Maths is merely an easy subject to measure... it thus facilitates the bureaucratic craving for targetry and control". He is absolutely correct when he presses the importance of the Humanities and Arts, neither of which are used for international comparisons and which are increasingly being stigmatised at the expense of STEM subjects.

    Unfortunately, what I can't agree with is when he says "There is no 'need' for more mathematicians". Mathematics is a brilliant and important subject and people definitely should be encouraged to go into these fields if they want to. What I don't agree with is this pressurisation and elitism surrounding the idea that the only reputable or respectable path is the STEM subjects.

    (Original post by the bear)
    maths is the only remaining bastion of rigorous thinking in schools. all the other subjects have been turned into a thin gruel of self expression and easily digestible factoids about so called global warming
    :rolleyes:
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Maths is like computer science in that for a functioning society you need a small number of expert mathematicians, but for most people, you don't need half of what is taught even at GCSE and in fact good communication skills are probably more important.

    (Original post by TorpidPhil)
    I don't really disagree with any of it.

    Most a-level maths is useless. Pure maths at degree level too has very few practical applications insofar as societal development goes.
    Yes and no. Pure maths is one of those things where if you are really good, you could be working in information security at a top bank or in the military, but if you're not quite good enough, you're less useful than a paralegal with a 2:2 in law from the university of Ronald McDonald.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Feel Tha Bern)
    Maths is like computer science in that for a functioning society you need a small number of expert mathematicians, but for most people, you don't need half of what is taught even at GCSE and in fact good communication skills are probably more important.



    Yes and no. Pure maths is one of those things where if you are really good, you could be working in information security at a top bank or in the military, but if you're not quite good enough, you're less useful than a paralegal with a 2:2 in law from the university of Ronald McDonald.
    Pursuing education shouldn't just be for a job.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    I do actually agree with most of this article. It is true, particularly with respect to international league tables, that Mathematics is heralded as the pinnacle measure of education and I absolutely do not agree that this should be the case. Towards the end he makes a point which I think probably has a lot of truth to it - "Maths is merely an easy subject to measure... it thus facilitates the bureaucratic craving for targetry and control". He is absolutely correct when he presses the importance of the Humanities and Arts, neither of which are used for international comparisons and which are increasingly being stigmatised at the expense of STEM subjects.

    Unfortunately, what I can't agree with is when he says "There is no 'need' for more mathematicians". Mathematics is a brilliant and important subject and people definitely should be encouraged to go into these fields if they want to. What I don't agree with is this pressurisation and elitism surrounding the idea that the only reputable or respectable path is the STEM subjects.

    :rolleyes:
    Exactly.

    He is wrong there, because there is much need for mathematics, but for most people to function in modern society, you need a concept of numerical size and basic arithmetic and unless you want a job with a specific mathematical demand, being able to communicate with others is so much more important.


    (Original post by Hussm)
    Pursuing education shouldn't just be for a job.

    Either way this proves my point, if education is being done for its own enjoyment value, forcing people to learn trig who don't want to is even more silly.
    Offline

    8
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by the bear)
    maths is the only remaining bastion of rigorous thinking in schools. all the other subjects have been turned into a thin gruel of self expression and easily digestible factoids about so called global warming. despite regular attempts by the loony left to dilute the maths curriculum it still stands proud; a flinty monolith amidst a sea of lukewarm half truths.

    :hat2:
    Hear! Hear!
    Online

    22
    ReputationRep:
    Something that's along the same lines but is actually a pleasant read: https://www.maa.org/external_archive...artsLament.pdf
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    Only teaching how to do the basic mathematical operations isn't really that different from the current school system.

    By line of best fit do they mean least squares regression line? I can't remember the formula for that so I think it's amazing that one third of the people that they polled do.

    He's probably being satirical. Showing people that the arguments not to teach maths better are so silly.
    Online

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Zacken)
    Something that's along the same lines but is actually a pleasant read: https://www.maa.org/external_archive...artsLament.pdf
    thanks for that Zacken... i look forward to reading it at my convenience ( that is the best place to concentrate ).
    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Zacken)
    Something that's along the same lines but is actually a pleasant read: https://www.maa.org/external_archive...artsLament.pdf
    Looks like an interesting read - thanks, Zain.
 
 
 
Poll
Is the Big Bang theory correct?
Useful resources
Uni match

Applying to uni?

Our tool will help you find the perfect course

Articles:

Debate and current affairs guidelinesDebate and current affairs wiki

Quick link:

Educational debate unanswered threads

Groups associated with this forum:

View associated groups

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.