Monday, 28 July 2008

How Does Maths Improve Our Writing Skill

In maths, you can see that there are many variables, symbols, expressions and mathematical operators.

The combination of these items forms a meaning of either a maths relationship or problem.

The same variable can also be written in many ways.

Examples of written forms (with y as the variable):
- numerator (above the dividing line) ==> y / a
- denominator (below the dividing line) ==> a / y
- power of a base (small size font and superscript) ==> ay
- base in logarithm format (small size font and subscript) ==> log y a

From the above few examples, you will realise that writing the mathematical expression can be a bit tricky when its form is not correctly presented.

Confusion may arise when they are not written properly.

Examples of confusion:-
5y being written 5 y.
Is the meaning still the same?

log5A being written as log5A.
Mathematical meaning of the relation changes!

5a(y + 6) written as 5(ay + 6).
Maths expression has been modified !

Why did the confusion or error comes about?

It boils down to the attitude in writing. If one did not write properly, especially in maths, the whole meaning of the expression is lost or misinterpreted.

In maths, the meaning of the relationship between the symbols, variables and operators resides in its rightful presentation.

It is different from the English language where a spelling error can still be recognized with correctness in meaning (not all though, if error is too extensive).

Maths trains a person to write properly and with a certain discipline, in order to retain the original meaning of the maths expression.

Good writing skill is, therefore, developed as a by-product of learning maths.

Clear presentation steps are also enhanced during maths question solving.

From the benefits of the above, it can be seen that learning maths is a very great activity in that, it is, not only,the mathematical content acquired, other skills are also indirectly picked up.

So can we deduce that a good mathematician can write nicely? Your guess....


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