Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Math in the Media - First Do the Math

So, is extra high school math actually "good" for you? There is some evidence here....

An article in the Washington Post by Health and Science writer Rick Weiss (July 30, 2007), entitled "First, Do the Math" details the results of a study performed by researchers at Harvard and the University of Virginia. Basically, taking an extra biology, physics or chemistry course in high school provides a boost in grade values for the college versions of these courses. But only in the respective field of the course. And no boost is seen in the other fields.

However, taking an extra math course in high school provides a boost in all three areas plus mathematics. More bang for your buck in that plan. The money quote from the article:

"The one thing that helped students do well in all college science was having taken an advanced high school math class. That undermines a commonly held belief that math training is not particularly important or helpful for the study of biology."

I venture the same can be said for an extra college math course, or even a math minor. But, then again, I am biased....

Monday, July 30, 2007

We're Back...!

Sorry for the lack of input during these last two months. With the changeover from Spring semester to Summer break, so many other things have overtaken my ability to write on current events and department happenings. And with my vacation looming, there will be another break soon. However, check back every once in a while for new posts here. And certainly check back often once the Fall semester arrives.