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Old 08-01-2010, 02:39 AM   #1
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Advice needed on Electricians Tafe course?

Hello, I am currently undertaking a Cert II in Electrotechnology (pre vocational) course.

I am enjoying it, but i am finding allot of the math beyond my comprehension.
I have realized that in order to learn the math required to successfully complete this course, i will have to re-learn the basics if math, such as times tables, algebra, trigonometry etc.
Basically my point is that I find math very difficult to learn, I failed math in both primary and High school.
I guess you could say that i had a learning disability from an early age.
Though I am great at practical tasks.

I am entering this field of work at a late age (i'm 29), I have done crappy jobs my whole life such as factory, store and retail. I won't something better now, an interesting and constructive job and I find electronics interesting. But I think I have bitten of more than I can chew. Unfortunately the errors of my schooling days have come up to bit me.

The problem is that I can't learn the math required in course as I don't know that basics, my homework consists of me studying the times tables instead of my actual homework for the course. Which in turn i've fallen way behind, and I would in no way pass the upcoming exams.

I guess my question is, have i missed the boat on doing to this level of education? I really feel that it is impossible for my to relearn say 6 years of maths in 4 months, I am trying but it is becoming very overwhelming.

Are there any electricians out there that can advise me if doing this course with very poor maths is achievable or not?.


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Old 08-01-2010, 07:19 AM   #2
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Are there any electricians out there that can advise me if doing this course with very poor maths is achievable or not?.
That is very difficult to say. When I went through my apprenticeship, there were some guys that had difficulty with math that made it through but whether your skill levels are above or below theirs is impossible to say. It surely will be a struggle for you but really, only you can say if it is attainable or not for you.

What they finally did in my area is offer a math refresher course. It was a pre-apprenticeship course that ran for about 6 weeks. All it was was a math course designed to refresh, and in some cases actually teach, the apprentices the needed math skills.

You might want to look to a community college or some other school for a course in math to help you. Trig is used a lot in our apprenticeship. Not knowing at least basic trig will cause your training to be quite arduous.


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Old 08-01-2010, 07:49 AM   #3
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Some of the theory and math they teach in many courses and apprenticeships will NEVER be used in the real world of being an electrician. If you decide to go the electrical engineer route then it is a different story.

That said, a firm grasp of basic and semi-advanced math is absolutely a requirement almost daily.
I have to say, if you cannot handle basic math you will do OK, but you will not get very far, especially in the electrical field. Actually all trades require quite a bit of math skill.
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Old 08-01-2010, 08:07 AM   #4
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Math and electricity have a close relationship. When I was in high school I found math interesting but I wasn't much for doing the homework. My break came in 12th grade where the class cover higher math - analytical geometry and calculus - and all the work was done "in-class". I often wondered what I would do with the stuff I learned. During my active duty years in the US Navy, I had the opportunity to take a 32 week advanced electronic course. There is was, rotating vectors and RC networks. So, if you plan to work in the electronics field, plan on some math. Don't try and learn it yourself. Look for some adult education classes so you have someone to ask when you get stumped. Math is a series of building block. Add/Subtract - Multiply/Divide - Square Roots - Angles and Degrees........
The problem you face it the class will move along and you will have to keep up both with the class and with your math. Have you had a discussion with the instructor?
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