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Pursuing My Dream Career(s), But Weak at Mathematics


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#1 Rythix

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Posted 18 January 2014 - 08:28 PM

Hi, guys. So I am currently in Grade 11 high school and I am trying to figure out how I'm going to pursue my dream career(s) with minimal-to-no usage of Math. I find Math so uninteresting, I've always done so bad in Math because I don't do work (since it's so boring). I am not taking the Pre-Calculus course right now, but rather the Essentials Course we have in our school. However, since I love computers so much, I want to go take post-secondary education without having to worry about heavy (or any) Math work mixed with computer work in my career.

 

Are there any good opportunities for me for post-secondary education that I can grasp? Cisco courses and certifications available without Pre-Calculus? Media courses?


Edited by Rythix, 18 January 2014 - 08:29 PM.


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#2 Kilroy

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:43 AM

I'd suggest checking with your local community college to see what the program requires.  You're not going to get totally out of math, but probably don't need pre-calculus.  The program I was in just needed one math class and intermediate algebra counted.  Math in high school is a totally different beast than college.

 

Certifications don't require any classes.  You can get study guides and practice tests and study on your own.

 

All of that said, college degrees and certifications don't reflect the real world experience you will need to be successful.  Life is an open book test, you don't necessarily need to know the answer, but you do need to be able to find the answer.



#3 mjd420nova

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:18 PM

Unless you pursue a programming career, the calculus probably isn't needed.  Basic electricity/electronics needs well grounded algebra skills to use the formulas needed in the understanding of math, physics and electronics in general. 



#4 MakeItBetter

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 10:05 PM

Would second the statement about electronics...but the electronics will definitely require some math.

Not complex math...but solid algebra skills and being able to walk boldly into imaginary numbers.

 

I took about a year's worth of electronic courses and my fellow students thought the digital electronics class was hard...

Really? Once you master DeMorgan's Theorem...not hard at all.  Everything's either 1 or 0. :)

 

You don't need calculus to do programming.  I had a sterling background in math until I hit Calculus. It didn't stop me from being a professional programmer for over 2 decades right in Silicon Valley with companies whose names you'd know. You can do a lot of programming without a lick of math, but having basic algebraic thinking will matter (if you don't understand variables, you'll be VERY lost.)

 

If you want to do complex computer science then there is some math that could count...like linear algebra (which I never got through, and for which calculus is a pre-req -- useful if you're programming spreadsheets and need to understand sparse matrices)...and there are some interesting things when it comes to state machines (used in compiler theory) ... there's some advanced math behind that, but you might not even recognize it as math, as numbers as such don't play a huge role.

 

Contrary to popular opinion, you don't need to be a c.s. to do programming.  However, it does help to get some courses about algorithms and data structures under your belt.  Understanding at least the concepts of Big O notation can be helpful.

 

Unfortunately, a c.s. degree often is used as a proxy for programming skill.  It's true, the BEST programmer I EVER met (now works at Google) was a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon ...

 

What country you're in also makes a difference. I worked with a startup where half of the funding came from a French company ... all the programmers (including the Carnegie Mellon guy) in development had ph.d.'s.  I escaped that, because I owned my own little world in an obscure part of software manufacturing known as software release engineering (sometimes called configuration management.)

 

SRE is wild stuff, especially with the web...one of the SRE leads at facebook has gotten some stuff written up about how they've engineered software updates at facebook...some pretty wild stuff...

 

Cheers!

 

Jann

 

Cheers!

 

Jann


Edited by MakeItBetter, 12 March 2014 - 10:11 PM.


#5 MakeItBetter

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 10:13 PM

Just to add...if you get into physics...I would HIGHLY recommend going thru some Calculus.

Derivatives make physics MUCH easier (as does trig).  Definitely worth the effort, and you'll have a better understanding and enjoy it more, I think.



#6 mjd420nova

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Posted 13 March 2014 - 10:11 AM

The biggest roadblock I have seen in some students in computer theory classes is understanding other counting formats, like, hexadecimal, or octal, not just base ten.  Hexadec is essential in early programming classes and understanding a basic computers operation.



#7 easyrider2

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 10:52 AM

Hi Rythix,

 

I never liked Maths and were never very good in it, however I found a passion for networking (Cisco) which is actually based on Maths and ability to calculate the numbers quickly. I wasn't sure if this is for me until...I started a Cisco training course with an instructor that would lay everything down to me and explained the way I could understand (it took a while;) This has boosted my confidence a lot, moreover, I have started a career in this field.

 

The most important question to ask yourself is what are you passionate about, because believe me, IT can get very technical and boring and without passion you can start to hate it...or think about changing career.

 

When you say that you love computers - what do you exactly mean? It may be worth to look online on different proffesions within IT and to think which one would be interesting for you. Or even better, speak to someone who already is doing the job ;)

 

Best of luck.



#8 mjd420nova

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 08:06 PM

The ideal job is the one you can't believe they pay you to do what you love.  A job should present daily challenges and new learning oportunities.






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