How Much Math Do I Need to Be a …

Main Content Add comments

Mathematics is  used in  almost all  jobs  and trades .  To help studentsrealistically choose a  career  or trade , it is important for them to beaware of the math skills needed in  particular  career paths.  If your child   hates math and has never earned a grade better than a C in a math class, it may not be a good  choice  to set  set goals for  a career in engineering.  This article is not intended to discourage anyone from  an interest in  a chosen profession  , but instead to shed light on the math skills needed and how  students can improve their    understanding of math  so they canbe successful in their chosen profession or trade.

Before I discuss the mathematics  needed  for different  trades  , I would like to talk about what we  need to  do when a  child  isn’thaving success  in  mathmatics  but still would like to pursue acareer involving  math  .  As I  mentioned  before, I am not trying to discourage anyone from a chosen  profession  . So, with that said, what can  parents and teachers  do for children to help them be successful in  mathematics  so they canenter a profession of interest .

First of all , start when  your  are young.  When children are young, they can have experiences that literally traumatize them for  ever  .  One of these experiences is feeling dumb because of not  comprehending  math.  A commonmistake  is to allow young children  the use of  a calculator for  math assignments when they struggle doing it by hand.     The beginning of   math education, sets thefoundation for more  complex  mathematical  ideas  .  Remember, if someone can’t multiply  18 and 37  , he/she won’t be able to  find the product of  (2x + 3) and (5x – 4) .  Doing  foundational  arithmetic is the  basis to mathematical thinking .  Please do not  have students  use calculators until they  understand  how to solve math problems by hand.  Once  they are allowed to use calculators,  continue to have  them do mental math andwork problems out by hand to keep  math skills    honed  .  Somesimple ideas for mental math include asking them  to solve   the “times” table,figuring out the tip at a restaurant,  estimating   the tax on a bill, or even keeping track and estimating the total cost of items  you are buying  at the  supermarket .

What about students that already have negative feelings aboutmath ?  The thing to do is go back in their education and  discover  when/where they began not understanding and disliking math.   Re-teach and review  the concepts they  need help with  , andmove forward to help them  be  more comfortable with math .    Much of the dislike   that some students have towards math is a result of  feeling like a failure  .  It is easier to say, “I  hate  math,” then to  understand the feelings  and moveforward .  There are  many  resources  that are  available to help  students  on their way to  mathematics success.  It will take  much  work, but theend result  will be a child that has a choice of any  profession  .

Some of the online resources available are  online geometry ,  virtual math lab , and  virtual algebra  tutoring.  There are also many learning centers and private tutors that you can find through your local school district or college  .   what  ever resource(s) you choose,decide what you expect out of  tutoring or the learning service .  Express your goals to those  that are working  with your  student  , so you can worktogether to best help your  student   excel .  If you try a service and it seems to make your child anxious, find out what is causing the anxiety and if necessary , stop using that service .   More  anxiety will only reinforce the dislike and fear of  mathematics  .  Also, you can talk to a school counselor tofind strategies to help your child cope with the anxiety .  You can  also  consult a therapist if the anxiety seems to overwhelm or debilitate your child.  

Taking steps to remove the  anxiety  of math can only be a benefit to your child.   What everresources you choose to use for your child (tutors, counselors, or therapists) will help him/her toovercome math anxiety .  Once the anxiety is under control, your child will have the confidence to succeed in math !

Here is a partial list of careers and the math that is required.

Actuary: Algebra, Statistics, Calculus

Accountant: Arithmetic, Statistics, Algebra

Administrative Assistant: Arithmetic, Statistics, Algebra

Business: Arithmetic, Statistics, Algebra

Carpenter: Arithmetic, Fractions, Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry

Chef: Arithmetic, Fractions, Algebra

Dentist: Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus

Computer Programmer: Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus (Depending on what type of programs you are writing)

Economics: Arithmetic, Statistics, Algebra

Engineering: Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus

Information Technology:  Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus (Depending on the type of systems and processes)

Lab Technician: Arithmetic, Statistics, Algebra

Law Enforcement: Arithmetic, Statistics, Algebra (Calculus for some forensic fields)

Lawyer: Arithmetic, Algebra, Statistics

Medical Doctor: Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus

Nurse: Arithmetic, Fractions, Algebra

Teacher (Elementary):  Arithmetic, Algebra

Teacher (Secondary) Non-Math/Science: Arithmetic, Algebra

Teacher (Secondary) Math or Science:  Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus

Plummer: Arithmetic, Fractions, Algebra

Psychology:  Arithmetic, Fractions, Algebra

Scientist: Algebra, Trigonometry, Statistics, Calculus

Be Sociable, Share!

Comments are closed.

Entries RSS Comments RSS Log in