"Joe made a good point about the way this is phr..."


by Eric Bruylant Jun 28 2016

help\_outlineDifferent versions of Arbital pages are keyed to different levels of general math ability\. What would you say is your general math level? I'm bad at math\. I'm not bad at math, but I'm not especially good at it either\. I can have fun with math, and I won't be anxious if I see a word problem I don't already know how to solve\. I am a programmer, physical engineer, or some other profession that calls on me to sometimes think in algebra\. I do research\-level math\. Hit me with the LaTeX formulas\.

Joe made a good point about the way this is phrased not sorting people quite right:

joe [11:50 AM]
“bad at math” = out of Arbital’s range

eric_bruylant [11:50 AM]
currently, yes the bad at math we're talking about is significantly a psychological aversion, not lack of background

joe [11:51 AM]
I’d say one of the things you might want to do

is to … oh

eric_bruylant [11:51 AM]
and we can't do therapy yet

joe [11:51 AM]
in that case, I think it’s somewhat poorly worded

because some people who are not psychologically averse might still consider themselves “bad at math”

just because they never really put any effort into it

like, they can’t multiply two-digit numbers, but they’d whip out a calculator if they had to

anyway: I’d say one of the things you might want to do is to have a list of problems that those people should be able to understand the full meaning of, although not necessarily solve

eric_bruylant [11:52 AM]
hm, yea. I kinda agree, though I'm not sure how to get all the people with an aversion

joe [11:53 AM]
I’d say more, “I don’t like math.”

eric_bruylant [11:53 AM]
since many of them won't realize the issue is an aversion rather than them being bad at math

that seems like an improvement to me

I'll put a mark on the page about it

joe [11:54 AM]
and I’d reword math 0 to “I don’t ​hate​ math, but I’m not particularly good at it.” (edited)

since Math 0 is supposed to represent “not very skilled”

eric_bruylant [11:54 AM]
seems good

joe [11:54 AM]
so they ​are​ “bad at math”, just not bad enough to have a phobia around it


Eric Bruylant

Note: I'm not certain about the alternate wording, and meant to suggest changes to the math 0 or math 1 pages rather than directly here. I may also be missing something, so am letting Nate or EY check/rewrite rather than approving.