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Mathematics is important in many fields. Research shows that if students take additional credits in high-school biology courses (such as AP Biology), it helps them in university biology courses, but not in other university courses. Similarly, additional credits in high-school chemistry or physics courses help students in university chemistry or physics courses, respectively.
But mathematics is truly fundamental. Additional credits in high-school mathematics results in increased performance in university courses in mathematics AND all science courses. See “The Two High-School Pillars Supporting College Science,” by Philip M. Sadler and Robert H. Tai, Science, July 27, 2007, pages 457–458, at www.sciencemag.org.
In fact, in the study cited, having additional mathematics preparation in high-school is more valuable to biology and chemistry than having additional biology and chemistry high-school preparation! For physics, having additional mathematics preparation in high-school is only very slightly less important than having additional physics preparation.
The conclusion is clear:
Strengthening your mathematics preparation in high school helps across the board in science at college/university.
The same is true of other programs that depend on mathematics, such as engineering, business, economics, social sciences, and professional programs such as medicine, law, etc. Having a superb background in mathematics helps a student succeed in a wide variety of higher education programs.
So if your children are in high school now and intend to pursue higher education in a program that includes some mathematics, take action now to ensure that they are superbly well-prepared in mathematics by the time they graduate from high school.
Click here to read more about why being superbly well-prepared in mathematics is important for students progressing to college/university programs.
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