Saturday, April 21, 2012

How to study Maths?

When I was in aesi as a student, I have written lot of posts (
) on this very same topic.

But last week I have received couple of pushy emails that wanted to
know how to study mathematics.

So here I go.

Maths is a subject of concepts and techniques to apply those concepts.

Vectors, derivatives, complex numbers etc are all concepts to link and
explain the physical world. If you don't understand them, no amount of
practice of solving them will be useful.

You need to understand what this concept is and then do practice
questions to apply those concepts.

Most Maths books just concentrate on the techniques to solve but if
you have access to Internet, then understanding concepts behind Maths
is much simpler now.

Head over to the videos of khan academy (
) and cement those concepts first. I didn't have them, when I was
studying, but now I never miss a chance to head over these videos to
cement my understanding.

Once the concept is done. All you need is practice.

For practicing, I prefer my Maths Teachers technique. (

He used to teach us a topic and the next day, first thing he used to
do was write couple of exercise numbers on the board and asked us to
do those exercise question in ten minutes before he began his next

This was the ritual. The practice of this random exercises from the
old taught topics was great. It cemented the understanding and this
regularity kept the concepts alive.

So these are the two steps that I used to do in my Maths study in aesi.

Learn the concept. Understand it. First from the teacher and then by

Once this was done. I went to the exercise of the book. Will
systematically solve all exercise, but also incorporated the habit of
giving myself 10 minutes to do random exercises question from the
previous exercises. This ten minutes were how I used to start studying

Every math study session began with doing a ten minute random
exercises from previously understood concepts.

Hope this helps. I am far removed from doing Maths right now but I
feel this principal that I learnt in class vii from my Maths teacher
still works and will be helpful to anyone applying it.

What are your ways of studying Maths? Do you have a nobel
technique to share?

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