Mature Age Student entering Uni - Maths Question

In summary, Mike is looking for resources to help him practice math before starting his new course of Engineering Sciences. He is considering looking for resources online, contacting his University, and using an online math tool.
  • #1
mike_the_tosh
4
1
Hi all,

First time posting. Thanks in Advance for the guidance provided.

I am entering Uni to change careers. I have worked in IT and Software development industry for 20+ years. I have a desire to enter into Engineering - Electronics.

I am enrolled to undertake a Engineering Sciences degree first to cover off the mathematics requirements before transferring into the desired course.

I have a couple of months before starting and would like to polish my math skills even before entering this course. I notice that due to not applying maths in the required way day by day that I need to get some practice in.

Where would Í find resources and possibly a reasonable plan to follow to achieve this?

All guidance is appreciated. My desire here is to start the course strong.

Regards,

Mike
 
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  • #2
Moving this to another Forum.

Apologies for incorrect posting.
 
  • #3
In general, whatever course you are about to take would normally recommend a set of textbooks. To get you started, you could try this:

http://tutorial.math.lamar.edu/
 
  • #4
Many years ago I also changed careers but in the opposite. I was an electronics expert but returned to college to study mathematics and computer science. I followed @PeroK 's plan in the sense I found and studied textbooks from my new area, particularly math.

Along with an academic advisor I spoke often with a mathematics teacher who encouraged me to review and practice topics I thought I new well such as trigonometry and transcendental functions, made sure I grasped prerequisites but also introduced me to advanced topics beyond calculus such as number theory and differential geometry that broadened my outlook beyond course (and work) requirements.

Working life limited my academics but I always found time for solving a few extra math problems and to apply what I learned in theory to my career in software engineering.

Mentors on these forums can suggest online activities in math and electronics engineering to provide strong foundations for your new career. Your IT background will be a serious advantage.
 
  • #5
I cannot tell from your question just what you know nor just what your proposed coursework will expect. Are you asking what maths are needed before starting an engineering sciences degree? undergrad or grad? My roommate in college majored in ES and seemed mostly to use basic and advanced calculus, e.g. Courant volumes 1 and 2, at least at the upper end of his work. The prerequisites for that of course are, going backwards, linear algebra, trigonometry, and high school algebra and geometry.I suggest looking at the prerequisites posted for your degree and coursework at the school where you will enroll. Also consult an advisor there.

I tried searching course descriptions in the harvard course catalog for engineering sciences. the solid mechanics course e.g. mentioned as a prerequisite appl math 105, which as i recall was the advanced calc course i remembered. but the course i know was math 105, hence more theoretical than appl math 105, but for some reason i do recall my roommate using or at least being required to buy, the book by courant, which is pretty high level math even if it does speak some physics. apparently courant is recommended to everyone, at least at harvard.
 
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  • #6
ALEKS is an online system and the most efficient way to brush up on rusty high school math skills in preparation for college. It has a smart algorithm that after a brief assessment keeps you working on problems in the "just right" zone - hard enough to be challenging for you, but solvable.

I'd start with the Precalculus course and drop down to Algebra 2 if that is too difficult.
 
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Likes Munnu
  • #7
Hi All,

Thanks so much for your replies, really appreciated.

I did not do Higher level maths in year 12.

The first six months I have enrolled in a bridging mathematics course that will apparently give me the context I need for the engineering course.

Leading up to that course I am looking for material that will ramp me u but also the ability to possibly be ahead of the curve prior to starting.

My thoughts based on your advise would be to contact the Uni seek advise and the books required for the course and just dive in. I presume I will quickly know where the gaps are and then rapidly seek to fill them.

I should have expanded my first post for you all.

Great forum and thanks for the help again. Feels great to have somewhere to ask questions.
 
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Likes Munnu
  • #8
Dr. Courtney.

I have just taken a look at ALEKS and will dive into that one too.

Appreciated. Great Tip.
 
  • #9
Mary Boas Mathematical Methods for the Physical sciences might be a good shout. Not sure if it'll be above your level but google it to find a PDF and have a look.
 
  • #10
mike_the_tosh said:
Dr. Courtney.

I have just taken a look at ALEKS and will dive into that one too.

Appreciated. Great Tip.
I did the algebra and precalculus ALeks through EdX. It was awesome.
 

Related to Mature Age Student entering Uni - Maths Question

1. How will my age affect my ability to learn math in university?

Age does not necessarily determine one's ability to learn math. While younger students may have had more recent exposure to mathematical concepts, older students often have more life experience and may have developed stronger critical thinking skills. With dedication and hard work, mature age students can excel in math just like any other student.

2. Will I be at a disadvantage compared to younger students who have taken advanced math courses in high school?

It is true that some younger students may have taken advanced math courses in high school, giving them a head start in university. However, universities often offer introductory math courses specifically designed for students who may not have a strong math background. Additionally, mature age students may have gained relevant skills and knowledge through work or other life experiences that can be applied to their math studies.

3. How can I balance my studies with other responsibilities as a mature age student?

It is important for mature age students to prioritize and manage their time effectively. This may involve setting aside specific study times, seeking support from family and friends, and utilizing resources provided by the university such as tutoring services. It is also important to communicate with professors and seek extensions if needed.

4. Will I be able to keep up with the fast pace of university math courses?

University math courses can be challenging and move at a fast pace, but it is important to remember that everyone learns at their own pace. Mature age students may have to put in extra effort and time to catch up on any missed concepts, but with determination and hard work, they can succeed in their courses.

5. How can I overcome any anxiety or fear I have about returning to school as a mature age student?

Returning to school as a mature age student can be daunting, but it is important to remember that you are not alone. Many universities have support services specifically for mature age students, such as peer mentoring programs or study groups. It can also be helpful to connect with other mature age students and share experiences and advice. Remember to stay positive and have confidence in your abilities to succeed.

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