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Math for Engineers


The word mathematics comes from the Greek (máthema) which means science, knowledge, or learning. Mathematics is commonly defined as the study of quantities and relations through the use of figures, numbers, patterns, and symbols.


Even though mathematics itself is not generally considered a natural science, the specific structures that are investigated by mathematicians often have their origin in the natural sciences, regularly in physics.


Mathematics crosses over the interconnected branches of the mathematics and statistics field by demonstrating how applied and pure mathematics can be used in statistics and actuarial science, or how solving certain problems may require techniques drawn from calculus and algebra. In general, the study of mathematics may embrace the following subjects:










There are other subjects within mathematics, and many sub-subjects under the major subjects.


Divisions of Mathematics


There are two major divisions of mathematics: pure and applied.

Pure Mathematics is the mathematics which underlies all applications.

Applied mathematics is a branch of mathematics that concerns itself with the application of mathematical knowledge to other domains. Such applications include mathematics of engineering, numerical analysis, optimization, modeling, mathematical biology, bioinformatics, financial mathematics, etc. Engineering mathematics describes physical processes, and so is often indistinguishable from theoretical physics.

Important subdivisions include: fluid dynamics, mechanics, and Maxwell’s equation that govern electromagnetism.


In order to find a way around the collection of mathematical ideas, it is useful to organize them and classify them in some way into parts.

Among the ways to divide the field of mathematics is by field of application.

There are many books and courses in schools labeled “Engineering mathematics”, “Financial mathematics”, “Mathematics for social scientists”, and so on.


Math in Engineering


Math is present in all disciplines of science and engineering. Traditionally, it has been the needs of the physical sciences including engineering which have driven the development of many parts of math, particularly analysis.


Mathematical talent and problem-solving ability is needed in engineering, physics, chemistry and other sciences. In fact, with the application of mathematics in business and the social sciences, there is barely a field that does not need a good background in math.


An understanding of key mathematical concepts together with a skill to apply them effectively to solve engineering problems is an essential ability that every engineering student must acquire.


Many students learn to solve theoretical problems without being able to apply that knowledge and further, are exposed to pure rather than applied mathematics. As well, the teachers’ perception of mathematics clearly affects the manner in which it is presented and in turn, affects students’ perceptions and understanding of mathematics.


View a Movie: Math in Building Custom Guitars

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