June 30th, 2013, 08:30 AM  #1 
Newbie Joined: Jun 2013 Posts: 1 Thanks: 0  Why do I suck so much in Mathematics ? I need your help .
I am very disappointed of myself. I am not able to believe that I joined this forum which is about mathematics. I am 21 year old and I always run away from mathematics from when I was 15 . I never did good in maths , even after hardworking all the time and studying late night , I always sucked at maths. I don't know , all these equations , theorems , methods , steps and everything never gets inside my head . I am really sad about this . I wanna be good in maths but no matter how much hard I try , I am not able to succeed. But now I had enough and I am gonna do well in mathematics. I am tired of getting embarrassed in front of my class mates , teachers , and even my sister. Someone here please suggest me how to start and where to start. I do know the basics of course , but after my 10th Grade I never touched maths coz I was scared of it. I just realized that I cannot avoid mathematics from my life and in my college which I am going to join soon , I have these topics to learn which includes Matrices , Numerical Analysis , Differential Equations etc. Please don't tell me to avoid mathematics because I am good at programming , i love to program and I love C , C++ and Java that is why I took computers in my college and Mathematics is a vital part of programming . I am dreaming about becoming at least a bit good at mathematics from now on. So please guide me guys, tell me where and how can i Start and about all those mathematical topics i mentioned above. How can I learn it , what are the prerequisite knowledge to learn those. PS : I have a great respect for Mathematicians , i grew up in the same hometown where the Great Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujam https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srinivasa_Ramanujan was born , I grew up listening to the tales of Indian Mathematicians. I appreciate your time. Thanks a lot 
August 28th, 2013, 06:40 AM  #2 
Newbie Joined: Aug 2013 From: United Kingdom Posts: 23 Thanks: 0  Re: Why do I suck so much in Mathematics ? I need your help
I have a friend who had much the same problem as you when he was doing his maths and further maths Alevels. Like you, he was doing them to aid his programming, and again, like you, no matter how much work he put into it, he could never get the grasp of the maths. After 10th grade, to get a well rounded, basic (but strong) mathematical background, I'd try to get your hands on an AS level maths textbook. That should be a fairly smooth transition from what you can already do, and after that, you can use the knowledge to move on to other areas, if you need to. After that, you'll have the skills to go on to other areas of maths that you need for your programming, whatever that might be. I wish you the best of luck for your maths in the future! 
August 28th, 2013, 01:58 PM  #3  
Global Moderator Joined: Nov 2006 From: UTC 5 Posts: 16,046 Thanks: 938 Math Focus: Number theory, computational mathematics, combinatorics, FOM, symbolic logic, TCS, algorithms  Re: Why do I suck so much in Mathematics ? I need your help
There are many people who find themselves in this position. Personally I think it's because of changes in the educational system: too much math, too quickly, and not much support for those who get left behind. The good news is, it's absolutely fixable. In fact, you'll probably find it much easier the second time around, because you have the mental maturity you lacked when you first approached the subject. (It will take a bit to get back into 'the groove' of doing math, but don't worry about that.) Quote:
Quote:
 
August 31st, 2013, 10:22 AM  #4  
Senior Member Joined: Mar 2012 From: Belgium Posts: 654 Thanks: 11  Re: Why do I suck so much in Mathematics ? I need your help Quote:
But just don't watch the videos there. do something with it. Invent some exercises about the subject (or search them) and make them. Sometimes play around with the idea in your head and see if you can find out something new or interesting. I have simply watched these videos some time ago and I can't really remember right now what it was all about. If I would learn again about the subject I would understand it quicker though. But I guess that's not really what you want. If you have any questions about solving a problem then you can always send a post somewhere on the forum and I am sure people would be glad to help you out. Best of luck!  
September 9th, 2013, 10:50 AM  #5 
Newbie Joined: May 2013 Posts: 7 Thanks: 0  Re: Why do I suck so much in Mathematics ? I need your help
I think they have a section for Linear Algebra, and in fact, Linear Algebra is the easiest of the Math courses (also the most intuitive if you are into regression analysis. If you are doing poorly with your current method, then change it. If you are more visual/listener watch the thousands of videos online, or you can read Paul Notes (very good resource) or your own textbook. A very useful advice is to take notes of exactly the mistakes you make when solving a problem, so you will be well aware of your own mistakes. 
September 20th, 2013, 02:52 AM  #6 
Newbie Joined: Sep 2013 Posts: 1 Thanks: 0  Re: Why do I suck so much in Mathematics ? I need your help
I was watching a video on YouTube a couple of days ago, It was called The Great Debate: The Storytelling of science, in this a woman I believe it was asked the exact same question and the response from the entire board was almost unanimously that there is rarely a case where somebody is innately bad at math it's all about practice and in some sense I agree with that but also I'd say maybe it's less a case of you're bad at maths but more so you don't do maths the same way the people you are comparing yourself to do. I too use to think that I was bad at math because I took ages to complete a problem when somebody else could do it in a couple of seconds but later on I realized that there is a relationship between the time it takes you to complete a problem and the amount of errors you made which meant I took longer to do a problem but I almost never made errors whereas those that did it in half the time made errors often. Additionally, the field of mathematics is very broad and as such your life experience and talents are going to lead you to be good at certain areas within mathematics, given you're are programmer I'm going to assume you're very logically minded and as such you'd probably be very good at geometry since that contains a fair amount of logic. Point being play to the strengths that you have developed thus far or if not that then work hard at the areas you want to improve in. Last piece of advice is while you study be sure that you are making an effort to retain the information, I myself have read through a book in a matter of days and then realized that I hadn't retained any of the information in the book , my brain was just in idle mode throughout the entire book, analyse the content you're reading/learning, engage your brain in the process so that is doesn't just switch off. PS. Khan Academy is really good in my opinion, so even if you don't feel it really helps maybe just keep at it . . . Good luck 
May 22nd, 2014, 05:31 AM  #7 
Senior Member Joined: Jul 2013 From: United Kingdom Posts: 471 Thanks: 40 
If you had always ran away from mathematics, the chances are  you'll have to start working on the very basics again. Unfortunately, there will be a long road ahead of you  if you'd like to excel at this subject. The only good news I can give you  is the fact that you're 21, so you'll have plenty of time to put things right. My advice is quite simple: 1) Work on Key Stage 1 to Key Stage 3 books patiently. KS1, KS2 and KS3 books can be found on Amazon.co.uk, or any good book store. You should spend at least a year studying these books in ORDER. Once you've mastered these basics, move on to step 2. 2) Study for your maths GCSE's patiently. Retake your maths GCSE exams and get a good grade before starting your maths ALevels. Spend 1 to 2 years doing your maths GCSE's. 3) Study for your maths ALevels patiently and take your A Level examinations. It may take you 3 years to get a maths ALevel certificate, but your hard work should pay off in the end. 4) Once you've completed your ALevels  you can either go to university and get a degree in mathematics, or study Futher Pure Mathematics. Both are brilliant choices. I can't pretend that a quick fix exists. What I had said may shock you, but if you have the right frame of mind  anything can be achieved. A strong will and courage will be required. Time can be our worst enemy  but if we make friends with patience  time can be defeated. If you do decide to embark on this journey  remember to enjoy it. 
May 27th, 2014, 12:41 PM  #8 
Newbie Joined: May 2014 From: London, UK Posts: 3 Thanks: 1 Math Focus: Topology, but I am getting into Number Theory also.  How to Become a Pure Mathematician (or Statistician) I recommend this to provide you with some inspiration, resources (lots of them!) and most importantly direction. Good luck 
August 15th, 2014, 11:59 PM  #9 
Newbie Joined: Aug 2014 From: India Posts: 8 Thanks: 1 
Dear Friend, I went through your message completely. Math is not a difficult subject to learn. It is very easy to understand when you have the right source to learn. I think that you have not had any right source yet. That is why you feel like this. I am a math teacher and i have been teaching math for the past ten years. I give you the link to my website in which you can find various topics of math, concepts, formulas and sample problems which are very easy to understand. If you still have any doubts or clarification, please mail me to the e.mail id : v4formath@gmail.com. Please click the below link to access my website. Thanks! Online Math Free Help for All 
August 18th, 2014, 01:21 AM  #10 
Senior Member Joined: Apr 2014 From: Glasgow Posts: 2,164 Thanks: 736 Math Focus: Physics, mathematical modelling, numerical and computational solutions 
There's lots of really good advice on here already, but I just wanted to say that if you need to ask any questions, maths related or otherwise, then this forum is the right place to be. We will happily help you with anything you might find difficult and some of us here have teaching experience also. I worked as a private tutor for a while and used to teach people in your position all the time and chances are there are other people here who have similar experiences or who have been teaching as a job. i.e. you've come to the right place. That's already a good start! 

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