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Resources for learning Math

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by ADbassman, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. So it turns out that I'm no good at Math, and really haven't been since about 6th grade. I'm older now, have a bachelors degree and a decent job, I just concentrated in areas that had nothing to do with math. I'm pretty good at self study and figured it's about time I make an effort to improve that part of myself.

    Now the obvious solution is to go back to school and actually pay attention in math classes, but I really don't have that luxury right now. I'd much rather just go at it in my free time and use workbooks or something of the like. I was curious if any TBers in academia or otherwise had any good recommendations for book or could perhaps point out some resources to help me out.
  2. what sort of math are you wanting to learn?
  3. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Here's an off the wall idea. Learn programming. That way you will pick up a skill, and you will brush up on a reasonable amount of math in the process.
  4. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    Cash money.
  5. SwagAttack


    Sep 14, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    Ya this is probably the most important question. You can probably find lectures online for certain subjects. If it is basic geometry/algebra, there are definitely plenty of sites that can go into detail about it. If it is more advanced calculus, then it will be harder to find. I never find that reading the book helps, if anything reading math texts confuses me more.
  6. I mean, if it's geometry or algebra, just to go your local textbook store. if it's differential equations..uh.. I'm sorry.
  7. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I work with a lot of people with remedial math skills. We've recently started to use the ALEKS system to get people up to speed. We use it in classes with directed professorial supervision, but the self-accessed program is just as useful and successful...and not painful at all. The 6 week access is 32$, and the longer access is 70-something. Our students love it and seem to get a lot out of it. Has a whole bunch of different levels, extremely advanced instructional methodology, etc. Available a la carte to anyone:

  8. gttim


    Dec 12, 2009
    Atlanta, GA
    Start with an algebra book and a solutions manual. Work through the textbook. Geometry next. Maybe statistics. You can learn almost anything you want that way. Check ebay for text books and solutions manuals.

    Just make sure you know why you are getting the correct answers before you proceed.
  9. SwagAttack


    Sep 14, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    I love math, but differential equations was the one I hated most. Yet, it is the one I need to use the most.
  10. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    Get into the drug game. You'll learn your maths real quick.
  11. Take a few classes at the community college, there's no pressure there. You can take classes just for personal enrichment. I took multivariable calculus and differential equations at my community college just to prove to myself that I could do it.
  12. slobake

    slobake resident ... something Supporting Member

    What you need is some weapons of math instruction.
  13. 6jase5

    6jase5 Mammogram is down but I'm working manually

    Dec 17, 2007
    San Diego/LA
    Khan Academy my friend, the power of the internet to deliver free education. Supported by folks like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.
  14. kesh


    Jul 9, 2012
    Brighton, England
    Check out http://www.khanacademy.org/. It goes from simple arithmetic to calculus and beyond.

    It has some exercises as well as lectures, but the way to learn maths is to do a lot of exercises.
  15. That's an important question. I just kinda lumped it all together.

    I suppose it all started to fall apart around high school Algebra. I ended up taking Algebra about 3 times in college before squeaking by with a C. After that I didn't have to take any math courses. I'd like to learn the Algebra and actually understand it this time, then geometry and statistics. I don't know if I have much use for calculus but you never know.

    Thank you for the volume of replies! I wasn't expecting much, but this is great. Some really good ideas floating around too. I especially like the Khan University link. That seems like a good place to start. I'll probably end up picking up a basic algebra textbook at some point.
  16. The other math discipline that people often overlook but very important in calculus is trigonometry. At my college, before you could enroll in calculus, you had a choice of either taking a semester of advance algebra + trig OR one semester of pre-calculus. Other schools may vary. I chose the adv alg + trig becus it goes more in depth in the subjects.
    A key in doing good in calculus (stats too) is having a strong background in algebra .
  17. This. Saved me on my linear algebra final.
  18. SwagAttack


    Sep 14, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    Trig and algebra are the most necessary to get into advanced math. If you can't handle trig functions, you are definitely going to have trouble in calculus. But you would be very surprised how useful calculus can be. After being proficient and calculus, you can go into advanced multivariable calc without much trouble too. Basically same stuff, just expanded a bit.

    Edit: BTW if you want an actual textbook, the one I have used for my calculus classes is, Calculus: Early Transcendentals 6th edition. It does a pretty good job of teaching it. Has basic calculus all the way to multivariable with problems and all.
  19. May I sig?

    +100000. So good with science, too.
  20. beggar98


    Jan 23, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    There are probably a ton of methods and study guides and whatever, but if you're anything like me none of those things will hold your interest.

    I'd suggest taking up a hobby that requires math. Fdeck mentioned programming, but you could also delve into just about any sport (check out some of the advanced baseball statistical sites, like Fangraphs.com or baseballreference.com), cooking (any good chef measures his ingredients by weight, and can quickly adjust recipes based on how much food is needed, not to mention the math based science involved in molecular gastronomy), or, y'know, music- rhythm subdivision, scales, chord structure- pretty much all of music theory is math.

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