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The Math Myth: And Other Stem Delusions
Contributor(s): Hacker, Andrew
ISBN: 162097391X     ISBN-13: 9781620973912
Publisher: New Pr
    OUR PRICE: $16.19  
Product Type: Paperback
Published: April 2018
Annotation: The “lively” (Kirkus Reviews), provocative, much-talked-about book that challenges the mandate for all students to master a full menu of mathematics, from the bestselling author

When Andrew Hacker published an op-ed in the New York Times questioning the requirement of advanced mathematics in schools, it instantly became one of the paper’s most widely circulated articles. Why, he wondered, do we inflict algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and even calculus on all young Americans, regardless of their interests and aptitudes? In response to the controversy sparked by his ideas, Hacker fleshed out his arguments in The Math Myth, which Diane Ravitch has hailed as an “important book” that “demolishes some totally unrealistic policies that will prevent many students from ever receiving a high school diploma and leading useful lives.”

In a book Howard Gardner calls “important and timely—and a great read,” Hacker offers a bold examination of widely held assumptions about the Common Core curriculum, the frenzied emphasis on STEM, and the type of knowledge that is—and will be—needed for most jobs. A mathematics professor himself, Hacker, in this “direct and clear” (Kirkus Reviews) “worthwhile read” (National Book Review), honors mathematics as a calling and extols its glories and its goals—yet shows how mandating it for everyone not only prevents other talents from being developed, but acts as an irrational barrier to graduation and fulfilling careers.

Additional Information
BISAC Categories:
- Mathematics | Study & Teaching
- Education | Educational Policy & Reform
- Education | Curricula
Dewey: 510
Academic/Grade Level: General Adult
Book type: Non-Fiction
Physical Information: 8.50" H x 5.50" W x 0.50" (0.66 lbs) 239 pages
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Contributor Bio(s): Andrew Hacker is the author of ten books, including The Math Myth: And Other STEM Delusions (The New Press) and the New York Times bestseller Two Nations. He teaches at Queens College and lives in New York City.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2016 January #3)

Expanding on a furor-raising 2012 New York Times op-ed that questioned Common Core math requirements, Hacker (Mismatch: The Growing Gulf Between Women and Men), who teaches political science and mathematics at Queens College, takes an in-depth look at the issue and "the mandarins" behind those standards. Currently, national Common Core standards require students to study geometry, trigonometry, and two years of algebra in order to graduate high school—though calculus may be added to the list. Hacker believes these requirements actually stymie student advancement, locking out students hoping to be veterinary technicians, actuaries, software engineers, commercial artists, and cosmetologists because they fail to understand quadratic equations and other concepts that aren't needed to do the job. He also illuminates industry forces at work, including the proliferation of tutoring and test coaching businesses as well as the practice of "deskilling." Hacker calls for a sensible focus on adult arithmetic—the basic algebra and statistics skills needed to understand interest rates or calculate mileage for expense reports—and reserving advanced math for the fields where it's actually used. Hacker's accessible arguments offer plenty to think about and should serve as a clarion call to students, parents, and educators who decry the one-size-fits-all approach to schooling. (Mar.)

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