Wednesday, August 27, 2008

More Silly Freshmen

I got an email from a freshman enrolled in the gen-ed math class. The gen-ed class is supposed to be a catch-all class for students whose majors don't require real math. This is Math for Poets. Math for Philosophers. Math for Stoners. We assume that the students can't do any algebra. We cover some serious topics (and a fair number of proofs), but for the most part it's pretty straight-forward.

This freshman finds the gen-ed course too easy and wants to switch into College Algebra. College Algebra is not on the gen-ed list. Its only purpose is to teach algebra to students who want to take Calculus Lite.

I have spent innumerable hours this week pushing college algebra on the freshmen. Hundreds of students have been pleading with me to please please please let them take calculus or anything other than College Algebra. And here is this guy, voluntarily trying to switch into College Algebra.

I checked his placement test score. He has one of the highest scores in the freshman class. Very obviously qualified for Real Engineering Calculus.