Online College Math Courses

By: Staff Writer

There is a trend in the United States that is quite worrisome for certain sectors of our economy, and that trend is the downward spiral of proficient math skills among undergraduate college students.

Online College Math Courses

According to onlinecollegeclasses.com, there was a study of college and university students released in December 2005, which was funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts, that shows there is cause for concern in the performance of these students in their math courses.

About 20% of students pursuing four-year degrees had only basic quantitative skills. Similarly, only 30% of two-year students had basic math skills. Many of the students surveyed had problems estimating if their cars had enough gas to reach the nearest service station!

This same website (onlinecollegeclasses.com) also points to another study by the body responsible for the administration of the ACT – a national college admission exam, which also showed startling results. Only 40% of high school seniors in the 2002-03 class who took the exam received a score that showed that they were ready for college-level algebra.

These studies show that many students and prospective students may not consider math to be an important subject. What many of these students probably haven’t considered is that some of the highest paying and most secure jobs require strong math skills. Some of these jobs include careers in finance, engineering, accounting, and computer science. To illustrate this point, we have gathered information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics about the salary levels of professions that require strong math skills.

  • Accountants and Auditors: The mean salary was $59,430 in 2008. The middle half of professionals in the field earned between $45,900 and $78,210, while the bottom ten percent earned $36,720, and the top ten percent earned a six digit income, with an average salary of $102,380.
  • Finance Professionals: Due to the wide variety of professions in the financial field, the median salary has a large range. The annual salary range starts at around $43,000 and tops out at around $90,000. Many finance professionals also earn performance bonuses on top of their regular salaries and can be a significant part of their earnings.
  • Statisticians: The median annual salary in May, 2010 was $72,830. The middle 50 percent earned between $51,630 and $97,330. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $39,090, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $119,100.
  • Computer Hardware Engineers: The median annual salary in May, 2010 was $98,810. The middle 50 percent earned between $77,570 and $123,630. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $61,360, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $147,890.
  • Petroleum Engineers: The median annual salary May, 2010 was $114,080. The middle 50 percent earned between $85,930 and $158,580. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $63,480, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $166,400.

As you can see from the figures above, math can take people far in their careers. Prerequisite math courses for degrees in these fields require a minimum of basic calculus. Other degrees require advanced courses in calculus and other advanced math.

Since many students may not be properly prepared from their high school education to take on these types of math courses (since many high schools these days only require two years of math), a good way to get caught up to speed is by taking online college math courses. Online math courses can provide a flexible alternative to on-campus classes while students increase their math proficiency.

If you are one of those students who needs to brush up on his or her math skills, then taking online college math courses may be a great solution to get you on track. There are a number of online schools that offer online math courses that are very budget friendly. Do a little research online to see which one would fit your needs the best.

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