Reviews

Math Myths

Wonderful Stuff
College Junior
Sierra College, Rocklin, CA

I found many of the Articles linked on the howtostudy.org Math page to be best suited to getting Students through Lower Division Math. I really liked this page because it provides perspective on Mathematics as a whole, potentially even through Graduate Level and Professional Mathematics. The Myths that the Author describes often inhibit Students from actually doing any Actual Math in Math Class! Mathematics is about bringing incredibly sustained thought, contemplation and analysis to really Difficult Problems in order to provide rigorous, complete and Proven Solutions that further Mathematics may then be based upon. It is Easy to no one, not even PhD Mathematicians or the best Mathematicians in the World - because if it were Easy, we would have the Mathematics to then do thoroughly Amazing things that would otherwise be Impossible. (This, of course, describes our current Technology!) If you're such a "Math Genius", then why aren't you doing PhD Level Mathematics: all it requires is Interest and understanding the prior Math! (One of my fellow Classmates at University was -- an 8 year old girl who was taking Graduate Level Math.) Studies in Calculus should be required of all Students, including those Majoring in the Written Humanities (I happen to be a Double Major), because they represent the most Important and Difficult Academic Ideas that are the basis of all of our Culture. Today's Women seem to be better at Math than Men because Mathematical Study requires Continuity in Education, and today Women consistently think more of School and therefore Learn more than Men. Actual honest to god Mathematics is less about "Learning" how to Answer to a Test and more about Learning and Living a new, different and entirely Unique way of thinking about Understanding and Interacting with Reality and our World. It's a wonderful Experience that done correctly helps the Individual Grow in Intellectual Maturity and as a Human Being.

Math Myths Dispelled!
Dina Miller, College Sophomore
Sierra College, Rocklin, CA

I enjoyed the article on Math Myths from the University of Alabama. All of the myths they discussed were very helpful.

I found two to be very insightful " Using Tools is Cheating" pointed out that tools like fingers and a computer can and should be used in math. The second myth, "The Magic Key", states that there is no magic key, that anyone can do math. They did point out that getting over any anxiety they are having is a great first step.

Overall, it was a very helpful article.

Thumbs Up
Soroush Motahari, College Freshman
Ca?ada College, Redwood City, CA

Very insightful. I had heard some of these myths before, but the way they're explained here is very good. It is very well written and the examples are really eye opening.

Very nice disclaimer
HS Sophomore
Ca?ada College, United States

As someone who has it pretty good with math (it makes sense to me) I can relate to quite a few of these myths. The "Good memory myth" and the "using tools is cheating myth" are especially well put. I generally derive formulas when doing higher math and while I can do math in my head, calculators are possibly the most useful things in math when it comes to solving equations. It makes sense to use them. Again, very nice

Cornell Note Taking
Carol Gatlin, College Sophomore
Ultimate Medical Academy, Tampa Florida

I have experience this method format in taking notes, and noting the principal facts to gain the correct answers in the math test. It is my opinion that the method really was helpful, and I sucessfully passed the math course.

Math Myths
Teddy Martin, College Junior
University of Alaska Fairbanks, 1000 University Ave Fairbanks, AK 99709

I enjoyed this article mainly because of its simple approach to dispelling some of the misconceptions of math. One of my favorite myths covered was the section talking about math being easy to those who are "math minded". Sure some people are naturally gifted in some areas over others, but the statement saying one's ability to solve a problem is not a measure of ability at all, but simply the result of experience and practice, rings very true to me. Like any other skill or talent, math is one that must be developed with experience and practice.

Math Myths Review
College Junior
Sierra College, Rocklin California

This is a very good article that describes the stereotypes involving math and the myths associated with success. The author does a great job of showing that success in math is not just based on IQ, but on the work that is put in to hone and sharpen skills. I do disagree with the author when they say "And there is nothing wrong with counting on fingers as an aid to doing arithmetic. This process actually indicates an understanding of arithmetic — more understanding than if everything were memorized." Things such as counting on fingers and using a calculator for basic arithmetic acts solely as a crutch to keep one from learning the material as well as slowing down in the calculation process. All in all this is a good article about the myths about math and what can be done to do well in math.

Very ahelpful
HS Sophomore
Sierra College, Rocklin CA

I found the math myth article helpful because people tend to take a lot of these myths as fact, which tends to hinder a person's success. I believe that the genius myth , which is the myth that says that people who are good at math are geniuses, is definitely not true. Being a math student myself, I tend to understand the material and can go through a math course with good grades, but I do not consider myself to be a genius.

There is also the myth that states that using any tool for math, such as a computer or your fingers, is basically not allowed ever. While there are times where some professors will not allow the use of some tools, it is not going to happen all of the time.

Lastly, there is the myth that men are better at math than women. I think that women are told that men are supposed to be better at math, so then I believe women don’t try as hard, which hinders their success. As a student and a tutor, I believe that these myths are good to be known as myth, so that people won’t be held back by believing these to be fact.

All the math myths
salma O
Minneapolis Community and Technical College, Minneapolis ,MN

It’s a great way to think about the everyday myths that people believe, how they can be wrong. There is the genus myth (that people who are great in math are smarter than the rest). I believe that is a way because math take a lot of skills in order to solve it.

Next is the myth that if math is hard for you than math is not for you. Well like it or not everything in life is hard at first then the more you do the easier it gets.

Another myth is that for a person that has a great ability to remember things will do well in math. I believe that is true in every study.

There is the tools are cheating myth, math would be harder than it is if people didn’t have tool to help solve it.

How about men are better in math than women! Gender has nothing to do with being smart, rather it’s all about that effort that one put in mastering it.

There is the “Who needs math anyways” myth that most young people believe that they can get around learning math. That is so true, we all avoid learning anything that is hard.

Last but not the least, there is “The magic key” myth. It’s believed that there is a magic key to understanding all math problems. I enjoyed reading all these myths.

Great thoughts
Elias Wheeler, College Senior
University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks

This article offers a great perspective for students studying math. It is really true that speed is no measure of how good a person is. As a tutor, I see people take 20 minutes to do a problem and after doing about 3 similar problems, they can do the same problem in about 2 minutes, and they know the shortcuts.

Another comment that was especially valuable was the idea that math isn't about memorizing formulas. I am not an engineering major or anything like that, but business requires its own special brand of math. I found that particularly in accounting. Those who grasped an understanding of the flow of money and why things went from one statement to the next had a much easier time with the course than those who memorized the process. If you are memorizing formulas, you may be making it too hard on yourself.

Math Myths: Busted!
Kyja Ramage, College Sophomore
Sierra College, Rocklin, CA

I am very glad that I read this article. Even though my major is math, I still believed in a lot of these myths.I thought that I was not going to be as good at math as others in my class, because I thought they were more "Mathematically Inclined," but it just turned out that they just studied harder than I did.

Also I was a little ashamed that I was good at math and not really anything else, but now I realize that there are plenty of jobs out there just for mathematicians (namely teachers, but that's what I want to be, so that's good), and that's just as good as any job out there just for Historians and English majors.

This might have just boosted my own ego, but I'm sure that other people feel better after reading this as well.


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