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Advice on studying maths

  1. Aug 13, 2017 #1
    Hello Everyone,
    Do I need to study The Philosophy of Mathematics and all the proofs in order to be good at maths as well as physics?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 13, 2017 #2


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    Education Advisor

    My personal opinion follows.
    Yes, if "all the proofs" means all the proofs as presented in a specific course on a specific subject, such as analysis or algebra. However, even in a specific context not all proofs need to be studied on the first reading. Also, re-reading a proof (or trying to re-create it yourself) helps progressive understanding of that proof and its context.
    Yes, in my view, mathematics (pure, applied, it does not matter) is ultimately about proof. However, the motivation behind formulating and proving certain (sequences of) statements is often different for pure and applied mathematicians.
    No, not in general, certainly not when starting. For physics, calculation and physical interpretation are probably more important. With that being said, there is of course a lot of cross fertilization between physics and mathematics.
  4. Aug 13, 2017 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    Philosophy, no, but what do you mean by "all the proofs"? You won't have to study especially proof techniques, they come automatically as mathematics is based on proofs. The interest in historical and philosophical aspects should also come with time, as if you're really curious about your field of study, these aspects are also a matter of curiosity, normally. I doubt it will be tested, so it's a matter of the books you read in your spare time. Finally these topics make the difference between knowledge and education.
  5. Aug 13, 2017 #4
    Thank you very much! I get it know.
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