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    (Original post by romansholiday)
    English is far more important than Maths in my opinion. Are you doing Maths while reading this post? No. But English... Yes.
    Ironically I am, glanced at this post mid-question


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    (Original post by romansholiday)
    English is far more important than Maths in my opinion. Are you doing Maths while reading this post? No. But English... Yes.
    Your computer is doing maths so that you can read this question.
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    (Original post by Smack)
    Your computer is doing maths so that you can read this question.
    What are YOU doing? You're reading. Did I mention anything about a computer in my original post?
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    I kind of agree, I find a lot of maths isn't really necessary to most people. Like multiplication, fractions, percentages etc is pretty every day.

    But I think a lot of the things I use in A level will probably be wasted on me.
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    The problem with maths is the same as all other school subjects. We are taught a very old set curriculum intended to filter out those who are good at passing exams from those who aren't. What we should be doing is teaching people basic life skills and important knowledge, and keep teaching them those things until they can do them. Once they can do them then they can move on to elective subjects they might want to pursue after compulsory schooling. Arithmetic is essential, common money calculations such as percentages and fractions are very important, as is basic statistics and probability (not so much the calculations, but representation and how to interpret things like graphs). Algebra, geometry, and everything beyond are totally unnecessary for people who do not intend to pursue numerate university degrees such as maths, physics and engineering.
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    (Original post by romansholiday)
    English is far more important than Maths in my opinion. Are you doing Maths while reading this post? No. But English... Yes.
    You should read the article Zacken linked. There is a good quote by G.H Hardy: "A mathematician, like a painter or poet, is a maker of patterns. If his patterns are more permanent than theirs, it is because they are made with idea". And another G.H Hardy quote: "Archimedes will be remembered when Aeschylus is forgotten, because languages die and mathematical ideas do not. "Immortality" may be a silly word, but probably a mathematician has the best chance of whatever it may mean. "
    Mathematics is a language to describe, explain and predict the world we live in.
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    (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.
    you could apply that same argument to literally any academic discipline. 'Most a-level english is useless. english at degree level too has very few practical applications insofar as societal development goes.'

    the reason why people study difficult but useless content is to get them into university. furthermore, studying useless a-levels also develops reasoning ability to help them later on in life.
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    (Original post by Raees_Sharif)
    you could apply that same argument to literally any academic discipline. 'Most a-level english is useless. english at degree level too has very few practical applications insofar as societal development goes.'

    the reason why people study difficult but useless content is to get them into university. furthermore, studying useless a-levels also develops reasoning ability to help them later on in life.
    Maths at a-level does not develop reasoning ability. It's mostly rote learning.
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    (Original post by TorpidPhil)
    Maths at a-level does not develop reasoning ability. It's mostly rote learning.
    for the average student, maths a-level is quite difficult. for most people here, it's childs play. furthermore, i conjecture that someone who can algorithmically follow the steps to say, integrate by parts, has better reasoning ability than someone who has never solved a quadratic equation. my point is even if you don't apply the knowledge in real life or in practical situations; studying these useless a-levels develops your minds ability to comprehend the complexities in real life or practical situations.
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    (Original post by Raees_Sharif)
    for the average student, maths a-level is quite difficult. for most people here, it's childs play. furthermore, i conjecture that someone who can algorithmically follow the steps to say, integrate by parts, has better reasoning ability than someone who has never solved a quadratic equation. my point is even if you don't apply the knowledge in real life or in practical situations; studying these useless a-levels develops your minds ability to comprehend the complexities in real life or practical situations.
    Given the threads on TSR I think that's entirely unfounded.
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    (Original post by Raees_Sharif)
    for the average student, maths a-level is quite difficult. for most people here, it's childs play. furthermore, i conjecture that someone who can algorithmically follow the steps to say, integrate by parts, has better reasoning ability than someone who has never solved a quadratic equation. my point is even if you don't apply the knowledge in real life or in practical situations; studying these useless a-levels develops your minds ability to comprehend the complexities in real life or practical situations.
    Is it though? Don't like 40% get A or A* or something crazy lol. Maths A level is way too easy.
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    God, absolute drivel, tell the kids of today to study the arts, they'll love you for it...

    This author can't be that great of a mathematician if he's ended up writing articles for the Guardian...

    We need to shake off this fear of intellectualism in Britain, starting by not perpetuating the lie that mathematics is useless anywhere but academia...
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    (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.
    You posted that using a Turing machine. You know, a thing that grew out of the Hilbert program, one of the most pure mathematical projects every undertaken.
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    Translation: maths hasn't helped my career in the media and the same goes for most of my friends.

    ...but he no doubt expects the light to come on when he throws the switch, to drive his car over bridges that don't fall over and to receive medical treatment that is more effective than a placebo.

    probably he aught to be grateful that there are large number of people who do know the area of a circle and how to calculate an average.
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    Maths is a very useful subject and I hold anyone who studies it in the highest regard. However, entirely selfishly might I add, I'm glad that we ARENT fixated by maths as that would spell the end of my academic career!
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    Considering I'm doing the Scottish Higher, I find maths hard. To me what's hard about it is that I don't find any joy in the subject as I'm learning things I won't ever use (apart from the obvious stuff) and am only taking it so I can't get into Uni. Out of my whole class, about three to five of them may use some of the stuff, one wants to be an architect the others are mostly wanting some sort of engineering or medical career.
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    (Original post by KhaleesiStorm)
    Considering I'm doing the Scottish Higher, I find maths hard. To me what's hard about it is that I don't find any joy in the subject as I'm learning things I won't ever use (apart from the obvious stuff) and am only taking it so I can't get into Uni. Out of my whole class, about three to five of them may use some of the stuff, one wants to be an architect the others are mostly wanting some sort of engineering or medical career.
    Chemistry uni student here

    In uni you willmost likely use integration, trionometry is used in a vast number of things such as construction, you are also getting passive benifits such as learning to think constructively about problems, you will spot patterns easier etc.

    Maths has many benifits, often you will need to take it beyond A-level to spot them, but there are a lot of passive benifits that you wont spot.
    At uni anyone who did maths does much better than those who havn't in my course.

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    (Original post by TorpidPhil)
    Given the threads on TSR I think that's entirely unfounded.
    You know your line of thinking is awry when it starts with "Given [...] TSR".
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    (Original post by 13 1 20 8 42)
    Is it though? Don't like 40% get A or A* or something crazy lol. Maths A level is way too easy.
    Looking through the results statistics from Edexcel they're not that far from the average.
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    Yes, totally agree .... Maths esp pure advanced Maths should not be considered science but just some art. There was a time when I was fully in love with Maths and Maths was my obsession. I did 3 Maths A Levels and got 7 100UMS out of the 18 modules. It was very hard giving up Maths and I suffered withdrawal symptoms.

    Glad I moved on. Maths is what a selfish person does, and I don't blame mathematicians. That is what they are, their natures shouldn't be held against them. They do what they are best suited for, and they satisfy themselves through Maths. They are the ones fixated with Maths. They are lost in themselves and have forgotten the world.
 
 
 

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