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General Education for Applied Math


sam conifer
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As I am signing up for classes and reading up on potential jobs for applied math, I can't help but be bothered by the idea that maybe I should be taking things like Calculus Based Physics classes or Principles of Chemistry 1 + 2 (the chem classes directly before organic chem), or General Biology Cell to Organism and Oganism to Ecosphere (which are the two biology classes that break into all the 200 bios). I did fit in Micro/Macroeconomics, but they fulfilled degree requirements. As applied math people use math in their work in non math fields, should I have basic education in these fields, or is it assumed that I am just the math guy and it will be the physicist, chemist, or biologist that handles the other stuff? These classes are not needed to meet my degree requirements. I can't really fit them in unless I am willing to spend another year or two in school. It seems graduate applied math classes don't involve them either.

Edited by sam conifer
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  • 3 weeks later...

I would say applied math in some form is a must. I took lots of physics and chemistry-- which makes sense since I took degrees in Chemical Engineering and Nuclear Engineering. But-- in the end, you're going to need a strong base in practical math in order to make use of the Physics, and Chemistry. Even Biology has a surprising amount of math if you really want to investigate and correlate information. There were many, many times in my career (I'm retired now) when I needed math as much or more than the chemistry and physics, simply because i needed a result I could apply that was properly developed from the theory.

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