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Academic Guidance Academic Guidance - Academic guidance for those pursuing a college degree... what college? Grad school? PhD help?


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December 26th, 2018, 09:08 PM   #1
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Must I know Geometry Proofs?

Is knowledge of geometric proofs essential to success in Pre-Calc or Calc? I understand the basic reasoning behind two-column proofs used in geometry (especially when applied to algebra) but know virtually none of the geometry definitions or theorems. I also know that I do not enjoy studying geometry proofs, while I very much do enjoy studying algebra.
I have taken care to remember the different properties of algebra which make certain actions possible, and so can do high school level algebra proofs with relative ease.
So my question is: will I be at a meaningful disadvantage for Pre-Calc and later Calc if I lack geometric proof knowledge?
I ask because I know I can further refine and come closer to mastering my algebra skills (+preemptively study pre-calc) at the cost of the time I would otherwise focus on geometry proofs. I do however want to continue passing my math classes with 95%-100% A's, and thus do not want to avoid geo-proofs if it means I will suffer greatly in the future.
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December 27th, 2018, 01:27 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Ebba Sen Pai View Post
So my question is: will I be at a meaningful disadvantage for Pre-Calc and later Calc if I lack geometric proof knowledge?
In my opinion, yes. Geometry is an important and vital facet of higher math.
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December 27th, 2018, 04:16 AM   #3
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Based on my experience in tutoring, the way beginning mathematics, including geometry, is currently taught in the US involves little emphasis on formal proofs. So I am not sure I understand your question.

If you are asking whether you must remember a bunch of geometric theorems and their formal proofs to learn any additional math, the answer is no.

If you are asking whether thinking in terms of geometry is useful for learning additional math, the answer is absolutely yes.

If you are asking whether formal proof is important to the further development of mathematics, the answer is yes.

If you are asking whether applying algebra, calculus, and statistics to practical problems requires a lot of formal proof, the answer is no.
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