Importance of Mathematics in our Daily Life
Many students had disliked mathematics or math and had given up on appreciating its use. Some do so since they see Math as a hard and intimidating subject, while some do not simply see the point of studying it. However, many have discovered and acknowledged that Math is indeed an important part of our lives. They had recognized that Math is an indispensable tool and that many encounters or transactions are highly dependent on it such as in banking and economics. Likewise, the technology in today’s society is the fruit of algorithms, several mathematical computations, and mathematical analysis. Among the technologies that had made use of math to be fully realized may include our mobile phones and telecommunications, satellites, the Internet and other electronic devices. Moreover, many infrastructures are also built carefully by utilizing math to take into account different variables. Furthermore, this paper will discuss the importance of Math in our daily lives and emphasize on its importance.
First of all, Math is among the many foundations in important professions such as engineers and economists. Mathematics is one of the basis of the theories and rules of thumb which govern specific sets of topics that are related to the field. Without mathematics, these professions will never serve their purposes.
Along with physics and chemistry, most engineering courses are based on the several mathematical principles which are made into practical applications. From the most basic concepts of algebra up to the complicated number theories, engineering is able to synthesize these concepts into tangible outcomes. Unfortunately, most fail to see this importance, and even thought that mathematics is just a hindrance for the aspiring engineers (Ool, 2007).
Engineers deal with real-life problems most of the time in their profession. They are tasked to solve the problems in the best way possible, which considers several factors such as economics and preferences. As an aid for their preparations, mathematics provides a training ground for engineering students in terms of situational problems which will test their minds (Ool. 2007). Even if some of the mathematical problems are purely theoretical or having a small amount of practicality, they are still helpful enough for the student in terms of teaching the basic concepts and principles behind the other complex theories in engineering. An example of the application of mathematics is the use of differential equations in determining vibrations and earthquakes. The main principle behind earthquakes is that they are dynamic responses which can be expressed in equation form. By knowing the different variables involved, one can determine the strength, behavior, as well as the impacts of earthquakes to the surrounding (Marchand & McDevitt, 1999).
On the other hand, when it comes to tangible things, mathematics has provided engineers useful devices which significantly helped especially the younger generations. This development can be seen in the invention of calculators, and the more modern computer and its spreadsheet applications. These devices are based on mathematical principles and made computations a lot easier and accurate than before.
Economics and Commerce
Along with the rise of mathematical tools and devices, the subject is not only limited to the physical sciences; moreover, the value of mathematics is also extended in the field of economics and commerce as well. In fact, most methods in economics and commerce are quantitative in nature and thus, it requires mathematical analysis and approach (Vitez, 2009). Furthermore, a mathematical analysis often requires a representation which can be seen in the form of graphs. These graphs have different functions and most of the time, economists deal with the scarcity of resources, and as such, they are responsible for predicting the flow of market economy. For them, the use of graphs is very helpful in determining trends such as demand and supply. These graphs are then considered as economic models, which are essential for a complete analysis of the market economy (Vitez, 2009).
Analysis of economic models is also mathematical in nature. Calculus is mainly used for the analysis, and its function is to interpret the trends. Using the knowledge in calculus, economists are able to determine the relationship between the involved variables, which are used for determining the best economic alternatives that can provide the best solutions especially for the economic scenarios which are daily experienced (Vitez, 2009).
In investments, stocks, and other business-oriented subject matters, mathematical equations are the governing principles in order to gain from the investment and stocks (Poppick, 2015). By abiding by these principles, and with good judgment about stocks, profits will be surely earned in the most efficient way possible. Not only that, using the equations will also help in predicting outcomes, earnings, losses and benefits of an existing investment. From there, an in-depth analysis of the market change will be made possible due to the sufficient knowledge gained through education and experience.
Banks and companies
Aside from them, banks, software companies, and insurance companies, which all play a fair share in our daily lives, are also indebted to Math (Rwwthaachen University, 2014). In order to keep track of the transactions made by the banks and other companies, a finance department is always essentially established for such functions. Furthermore, these transactions have different purposes, but all of them are governed by mathematical principles In fact, some considered that the combination of industries will produce larger profits (Career Cornerstone Center, n.d). Without mathematics, computation will become difficult and most people will rely on estimations and rough assessments. Fortunately, these problems are now being considered, and mathematics had done a huge role for solving these problems.
Along with the occurrences of loans and debts, as well as insurances, mathematics has been able to tell the time required for the payments. Mathematics becomes the governing principle in the mode of payments that will be made. If customers are unable to comply with the requirements, a fine will be incurred and using the concept of percentage, the loaner and the borrower will be able to determine the right amount that must be paid in response with the elapsed time.
In banking transactions, mathematics is essential, especially in today’s Automated Teller Machine processes, mainly the withdrawal, deposit, and fund transfer. The basic mathematical operations are done in a useful way wherein the machine easily adds or subtracts the money in a bank account, depending on the banking negotiation. As of today, the innovative solution enables bank users to withdraw, deposit, or transfer money in an easier way compared to the manual processes before. The availability of the services also becomes more accessible anytime because there are no personnel required to oversee the transactions, as the ATMs are made for such operations. This only implies that through the application of mathematics in technology, the needs of the people are being provided in an easier and more accessible way.
Math is an essential part of the society, especially in the industry. In the perceiving of methodologies, processes, and scientific ideas, Math allows full realization. Math also allow the delivery of information, and thus help in educating people. In one’s daily life, transactions are also dependent on Math while many products that are on the market are products of careful Mathematical analysis and studies (European Mathematical Society, n.d.). Mobile phones, for example, are the product of previous innovations that are not possible without math.
Math is also used in biological sciences. Agriculture, for example, makes use of mathematical reasoning to come up with ways on how crops may be grown better. They use math to take into account the effects of many variables such as precipitation, sunlight or the amount of fertilizer. In the markets, people also use numbers and math in purchases. They need numbers to measure everything and make sure that everything is fair. Likewise, math is also important in nutrition and medicine. Doctors do not magically come up with dosages or the recommended amount of medicine that one needs to become healthier. It is a product of analysis in which math is applied. Their profession is among the many professions that makes use of math. Furthermore, for those wishing to increase or decrease their weight are at least aware that there is a logic behind counting the calories they consume and expend, thus mathematics is in use. People are dependent on math since they avail of services that will not be possible without math.
Computations and projections are not possible without Math. Additionally, it had also been noted by some researchers that Math may help people think more logically (VanHaren, 2013). Thus, Math may also be applied in the simplest encounters that requires logical thinking. Thinking logically is not only helpful in mathematical problems, but may be applied in simple instances. For example, one’s logical thinking and math may help in preventing others from outwitting other individuals. Knowing the proper calculations when making a purchase or selling items may lessen the risk that others will take advantage of illiteracy.
Why Math is “Difficult” and not Learned?
Illiteracy and ignorance in the society are considered to be a problem. The lack of the ability to innumeracy or the ability in dealing with mathematical problems, specifically, produces problems and had likewise received attention in the past years. The lack of the ability to deal with mathematical problems render one with a narrowed down set of choices of opportunities. One cannot simply become an engineer nor excel in other fields such as commerce and finance without at least becoming good with numbers. With the society being more advanced, the demands to use math had also increased. Similar to reading, those who fail to study math in the early years in their life will have difficulties in other areas. So, with this much importance, why is math difficult for some?
Apparently, Math may be considered a language that requires one of complete comprehension to appreciate it and reap its full potential (Riccomini, 2015). A language requires one to have a strong grip of the foundation or the simpler terms in order to move forward. Before moving to more complicated, but not necessarily harder areas in math, one should first be able to grasp the ideas or theories behind math. One cannot simply become a master in calculus without first being able to do simple algebraic expressions nor basic mathematical operations. Moving forward will be hard without full understanding of the simpler concepts. As such, realizing that these numbers are not mere figures, but represent something else is also part of learning math as a language. Knowing a part of a language without knowing what it represents can only lead to confusion. Knowing a number is not enough, one must realize that a number represents ideas.
According to Goel and Reid (2012), incorrect mathematical wordings can discourage other students from progressing in math. Math is by itself fairly complicated for some, the way it is instructed can further make it complicated. Thus, causing others to lose interest in the subject matter. As a matter of fact, some people may feel math anxiety that may be manifested in panic, fear, shame, sweaty palms, difficulty in breathing, and inability to concentrate (Malinsky, Ross, Pannells & McJunkin, n.d.). With a good foundation of Math in the early levels of education, people may become more involved with Math. Leading one to be confident that later in life, many opportunities awaits them given their set of skills. Otherwise, people lose the opportunity to view Math as beautiful in a sense that it may deliver unexpected simplicity without comprehension (Satyam, 2016).
Math is an indispensable tool not only in the specialized fields, but in our daily lives. It is about time that everyone, especially younger students, equip themselves with its understanding since it plays a major role in many processes. On the other hand, institutions such as the learning institutions should learn that math is essential and pass on to students this realization. They must also be able to make ways on how their students will be able to excel at math and not merely teach it. Without the understanding of Math, it is no doubt that one will be left behind, especially in a society that continues to become more complex.
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