Anyone experienced in helping students in any on-line mathematic and homework help forum are destined to see questions like “why should we learn this?” and “are we going to use this in real world?” asked several times by different students. The existence of such questions from students could be blamed on both the students and the teachers. In one hand, it is possible that the students are not motivated enough to learn mathematics. In other hand, the lack of motivation in part of the students could also be the result of their teacher’s lack of knowledge about possible application of mathematics itself.
All professional mathematicians know, mathematics is an ever growing branch of knowledge.Mathematics could be applied in all aspect of our life and thought. Unlike what most people believe, mathematics is not only applied in hard subjects like science and accounting, but also in softer subjects such as arts, sports and linguistics. It is important for teachers to learn everyday about the application of mathematics before they teach their students mathematics.
For that purpose, mathematics teachers should learn from professional mathematicians about the latest and coolest application of mathematics available. Professional mathematicians however, are usually very busy. This is because the number of students that would qualify to become professional mathematicians are so low, while the number of possible jobs a professional mathematicians can handle are virtually infinite. Most of the time, mathematics teachers have to rely on articles like this to get a list and detailed explanation about possible applications of mathematics in real world.
Application of mathematics in Arts
Mathematics could be applied not only for hard subjects like science and accounting, but also for softer subject like arts. The arithmetic itself for example, could be applied for making visual effects in three dimensional graphic rendering and image manipulation. The combination of polynomials and numerical methods, could be applied to produce what we know as fractals. The application of logic and conic section could also be used to create the cute and adorable Elephant Equation.
Outside the domain of visual arts, mathematics transform known as Fourier Transform could be used for sound and audio editing. By coupling the audio editing with the application of matrix multiplication, mathematicians can also transform an audio file containing the voice of a person, into a new audio file containing the same speech as if it were spoken by other person.
Application of mathematics in Biology
Mathematics could be applied for Biology in many ways. It should also be noted that biology itself is divided into several branch of learning. The application of mathematics for each branch of biology is going to vary.
In genetics, a branch of science known as bioinformatics use various mathematics technique previously used for electronics to analyze the gene of living creatures. By using a combination of statistics and algebra, mathematicians invent a method known as Hidden Markov Model. This model could be used to detect mutations from available genetic samples.
In ecology, the Lotka-Volterra predator prey equation – which is an advanced application of differential calculus – is used to model the interaction between predator and prey in the wild. By modelling the interaction, mathematicians and ecologists could predict the population of each species in the future.
The fastest growing application of mathematics in biology is related to the most difficult mathematics work called modelling. Mathematics modelling is a very hard job because there is no well presented equations and numbers given to said mathematicians as in the case of most mathematic tests and homework. In mathematics modelling work, a mathematicians have to modify equations into forms appropriate to the case presented to him. This modelling skill is widely prized for modelling scar tissue formation, intracellular dynamics, cell population interaction and cancer simulation. Modelling and simulation are essential to enhance our understanding about various medical problems which may lead to the discovery of proper treatment for those medical problems.
Application of mathematics in Engineering
The application of mathematic in engineering is very obvious. Building a house, a skyscraper, an airplane, a ship or even something as common as air conditioning unit require some understanding of mathematics to accomplish. These engineering feats require mathematics techniques ranging from basic arithmetic to differential calculus.
Basic arithmetic for example, is used for mixing materials with the right proportion. Mixing the material with the right proportion is essential for ensuring that the consistency of external color, internal color and strength of the object being made. Mixing the pigment improperly may result in inconsistent paint color, while mixing cement and sand improperly is may compromise the strength of said building.
From lessons in high school, we know that integral calculus could be used to determine the length, area and volume of a non-linear object. This lead to the fact that integral calculus is widely used to predict the amount of material required to cover a non-linear surface. Integral calculus is used for applications such as calculating the amount of steel required to cover the roof of Sydney Opera House, the length of wires required to support the Brooklyn Bridge and the amount of aluminium required to cover an airplane.
The complete list of all possible application of mathematics in real world is too long to be fitted into a single article. A student only have to search “Application of Mathematics” using any search engine to find out that the possibility is simply infinite.
It should also be noted that it is natural for any student to ask about the benefit of doing something for their future. After all, studying is also a form of investment in terms of student’s time. No one want their time and effort to be wasted on something with no apparent benefit for them. Additionally, students who know why they are studying the subjects are going to perform better than they who don’t .
In case students ask their teachers about why they should study the subject, it is advised that teachers should not take the question as something offensive. Such questions are in fact chances for teachers to introspect and improve their teaching methods. Moving from the old method of asking students to solve a given equation into more applicative and analytical activity could also help students to enjoy the lessons.