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Lack Of Confidence .

  1. May 23, 2010 #1
    Lack Of Confidence.....

    I just finished a College Algebra course. I did well for the most part getting high 80's and even a 100% on one of 4 exams! But when all is said and done I don't have much confidence in my skills.

    I worked hard and have right here over 500 pages of homework! I did twice as much as was called for for much of the course as it took me that much to grasp what was going on.

    I haven't received my final grade but am sure it will be a B at best.

    I seemed to not retain as much as I feel I should have.

    I trying to convince myself that part of the problem was the class itself. Great instructor but it was at jr. college and had a general to business focus with fewer examples based on hard science applications. I had trouble trying to apply the learning to my chemistry classes for instance.

    This was the end of a one year run and I need to get through calculus for my geology major. I actually really like math when I get it which was often but like I said my retention rate was low.

    Did any of you experience this sort of phenomena? Did any of you go on to excel at mathematics after initially struggling the first year?


  2. jcsd
  3. May 23, 2010 #2
    Re: Lack Of Confidence.....

    Hi Walstib,

    I do not struggle with math, but I've helped people who have struggled with it over the years. I haven't had math for years and am re-teaching some subjects to myself before calculus and it made me feel like a total moron...BUT when I consider that I am going through what would normally be four classes in a span of 4 weeks, I feel a bit better. You probably might want to review Algebra again for yourself...just you and your textbook. I would also recommend taking some trigonometry and precalc before jumping into calculus. I always think of science and math as different aspects of each other...and math is really just a bunch of steps and connections although they try to kill you with the names of the rules, properties and steps etc.

    My precalc teacher was horrible, but I'm happy she was because it taught me to not depend on the instructors to teach me, but to learn from the text and use as many resources that are available to me...internet, etc. I would recommend you try the same and see if it works for you. Be present in class and gather what you can, be sure to ask questions on things you do not understand, and enjoy yourself!

    I <3 Geology by the way! All the best to you!
  4. May 23, 2010 #3
    Re: Lack Of Confidence.....


    I will be enrolling in Trigonometry this fall. Any advice on some good resources to get my feet wet or what aspects of algebra I should go back and master?

    Thanks again,

  5. May 23, 2010 #4
    Re: Lack Of Confidence.....

    Nathaniel Max Rock has some books based on the standard for Algebra I and II. If you look for them in Google books they are there in entirety and entirely free His books are normally easy to follow and although he is a bit full of himself sometimes, the answers he gives for some of the exercises are inaccurate...the only reason I recommend him is the errors are few and far between and he covers what is required by most institutions. Plus you can always get something out of free textbooks :biggrin: (even if it's only a good laugh :tongue2:). On Google books his books are called 'Standards Driven Power Algebra I and II'...this is what I used to help me study....plus I found a lot of other things for free by searching, like cliffs notes, quick study guides, other textbooks, etc. I have not had Calculus yet either, so I do not know what is helpful for it, but I've taken Algebra I&II, Geometry, Trigonometry and Precalculus.

    But you know Warren, sometimes you may think you forget things because you try to remember them without application, but when you have to apply them you're amazed at how you've internalized things. I am sure you'll be surprised at yourself when you review it.

    Again best wishes.
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