By Marco Bonett Matiz
As a University of Bridgeport professor, I encounter many students who have a fear of mathematics. They have often been told and accepted one of several myths about the discipline. Let’s take a look at them.
- Myth #1: I’m not good at math. You’re not alone. Many people wrongly believe they’re not good at math, especially if they had negative experiences with it during high school. But what if you only believed this because your past learning environment didn’t work for the way you learn? What if you’re good at math, and all you need is a supportive environment that will adapt to your needs and learning pace? Here in the Math Department at University of Bridgeport (UB) we adapt our teaching approach to optimize each student’s individual style of learning. Our small classes are taught by passionate faculty who develop a personalized educational experience that’s tailored to your needs. Then, with the support of our tutors, students receive one-on-one attention to strengthen basic skills in the ways that make the most sense for them.
- Myth #2: Math is a man’s world. This belief is blatantly false, yet so persistent
in our culture that it’s become commonplace. In reality, however, if you are skillful and passionate about math and are willing to put in the work, you will succeed. At UB, we strongly encourage and support women who choose to major in any of the STEM fields, including Mathematics. We love to challenge the belief that math is only for boys by mentoring all students – male and female – to succeed. The overwhelming success rate for our students proves that math is truly for everyone. The Mathematics Department at UB embraces diversity wholeheartedly; some of our most talented STEM tutors are female students who were actively recruited by faculty because of their strong academic performance. You could be the next math tutor to be recruited from our classes!
- Myth #3: Math is not useful in everyday life. A common myth is that, unless you’re actively working in fields like accounting or engineering, math is useless in your day-to-day life. On the contrary, math is everywhere, and is used more broadly across fields and industries than you might suspect. Mathematical equations describe the motion of objects such as cars, the flow of current through electric objects such as your cell phone, and many of the learning algorithms in machine learning and AI. Math is also highly transferable between fields and careers. With the proper training in math, you can easily transfer into fields such as actuarial science, data science, business administration, and more. Our flexible Mathematics major gives students the chance to learn advanced math while also picking up the skills needed to transition into the workforce down the road. Learning math often serves as a pathway for specializing in your STEM field of interest. For example, students can attend computer science classes for credit toward their major. Doing so helps them prepare for a job in data or actuarial science immediately after graduation.
If there is an ounce of curiosity about math within you, there is no reason why you shouldn’t explore UB’s Bachelor’s in Mathematics program; our personalized teaching approach ensures a fulfilling undergraduate experience, focused on your success. With the right mindset, thoughtful planning, and the support system you need, you may find out that you’re better at math than you think!
Marco Bonett Matiz, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Physics at University of Bridgeport. Prior to joining the UB family in 2018, he worked as an instructor and research physicist at Yale University. During his time at Yale, Dr. Bonett Matiz was also named a Helmsley Postdoctoral Scholar. As a Helmsley Scholar, Dr. Bonett Matiz designed and implemented undergraduate-level math courses using evidence-based teaching practices. He has also co-authored several academic articles related to the study of Physics.
For more information about what UB’s Mathematics program in the College of Science and Society offers, please contact Marco Bonett Matiz, Assistant Professor of Physics, at firstname.lastname@example.org or to apply, please contact our Admissions department at https://www.bridgeport.edu/apply/.