I'm fairly new (less than a year) to programming and I'm just wondering what everyone's thoughts are about this.

Is taking college math courses necessary to be a good programmer?

I am learning online and I'm worried I won't be a great programmer without all the math. The last course I took was Trig :/

Also add any suggestions you have. Thanks all!

  • 5
    Fuck math reeeee
  • 6
    There's minimal math involved in most areas of development.
  • 3
    My job requires a lot of math (computer graphics).
  • 3
    @platypus yeah and it's not like you won't be allowed to Google how to do it if you do need math. I wouldn't sweat it. I'm pretty shit at math too and I've managed so far.
  • 8
    From my learning experience, majority of teachers fail to actually represent how useful math can be.

    Learning math can often seem pointless to oblivion, especially since so many teachers bombard you with seemingly pointless formulas, principles and stuff.

    Like for example, how many of you thought vectors can be useful at start?

    So if you don't like math because of those reasons, don't. Try to somehow inspire yourself by researching end applications of it, dunno.

    That being said, math is not in horribly required in programming, for the most part. Can be more useful in functional programming. But it can be very useful if you wanna do for example graphical engines.
  • 3
    No, you mostly (see below) don't need math.
    The reason why mathematics are required for studying CS at the most universities is, that taking them helps logical thinking (which is a requirement for programming of course) and gives a foundation for more math heavy fields.

    Depending on the field (like machine learning, cryptography, low level 3D) mathematics is a hard requirements, as those fields are just a nice name around it.
  • 3
    You won't need it until you really f*ckin need it. Depends on the field.
  • 2
    As everyone said it's not mandatory for most of it. I know people whom are viewed as Seniors being unable to explain matrix multiplication...

    But math are a VERY useful tool. For a lot of things. I found myself training all my mentorees about linear algebra and algorithmic.
  • 1
    I work in ecommerce web - for the most part.
    There's a hell of a lot of math, but it's mostly basic.

    Depends on the area of programming and what's involved.
  • 1
    maths make some things easier. Example?

    Back in the days I programmed a mouse follow thingy in JS. I wanted the thingy to follow the mouse in a specific way. So I drew a graph, get the formular, put it in the code and it ran on the first try.
  • 1
    Math is essential if your focus is in infrastructure engineering
  • 2
    I've found that it helps to understand what formulas do. If you can't do it in your head or on paper that's fine, just roughly know when to use certain things. Let the computer do the rest. It is just a giant calculator after all.
  • 4
    I'm doing a great job for 20 years without math, but as I recently studied math for my masters I can honestly say that it does help in problem solving and it trains your abstraction ability. So I'd definitely do math. If interested in how to learn math (in case you find it to be hard) let me know, there are simple techniques that help you master it.
  • 1
    @CodeMasterAlex Instead of saying "let me know" just give your simple techniques.
  • 2
    @hack check coursera.org, learning how to learn: mastering tough subjects.

    I used to suck at math big time but applying the techniques from that free course helped me pass 3 university math exams. Today I don't suck at math anymore and I even am able to still practice and apply it today.
  • 0
    @jotamontecino any suggestions of things for me to study? I really want to know as much as I can but know if I need to I can learn on my own with a math tutor.
  • 0
    @WildOrangutan I was a bit worried because I see all these websites that have you practice or do challenges and they all involve a lot of math it seems. I was just worried that I won't get a job based on the math skills.
  • 0
    @jotamontecino Yeah I actually do know about that just from my high school stuff. I'll have to brush up. If you have any suggestions I'm totally open to it!
  • 0
    @deadPix3l That is what I was wondering about. Just the formulas that are used frequently, etc. Are there a lot of online resources for the math?
  • 0
    @CodeMasterAlex I'd love any help or resources you might have. I was considering a Masters, but my Bachelor's is in Organizational Psychology. Did you have a math background before you got your Masters? My thought was maybe after I work in the programming field for a few years, go back for my Masters. I'm worried I'll be too behind on the math.
  • 1
    @ApplePieStyle, You asked, Do I need college math required to be a good programmer?
    The answer is.
    You can be a good programmer without math.
    The only way to become good professional programmer you need to learn the low level programming languages the (C, C++) and then after go to a High level programming language like Python or JavaScript but only if you are interested, sticking with C and C++ is also great. I recommend first start with book read a programming book which has a lot of code exercises on each chapter this book will make your foundation solid then after the completion of book you will have a great foundation so that you can easily follow any online tutorial in the future and learn any technology stack of your choice. This way you can be a good programmer.
    My tip while learning to code through book:
    1. Make Notes
    2. Do Dry Run your program
    3. In the beginning stages always code with paper and pencil or pen then test it on your computer.

    I hope it helps and Good Luck👍
  • 1
    @ApplePieStyle See my reply to @hack
    I don't have a math background at all - I sucked big time at math and didn't like it at all. Best advice I can give you is take that free course and apply what you learn from it. It absolutely really helps! And no, you don't need math to be a good programmer, it helps though but in my experience for most applications you don't need hardcore math, unless you get into 3d modelling, graphics engines or other math intensive applications.
  • 1
    If you are french fluent I can give you stuff...
    Now, no need to stress, sadly I know a lot of people who have a master's degree and don't know matrix functions (mathematical), in the US, Canada, France and Chili. So....

    Just be curious, and when you don't know something search it.

    I would also say to start with a high level language. Why? Because it's easy! And you are more likely to use them than a low level one. And then start to go deeper.
  • 0
    @jotamontecino I am native English speaker and I am fluent in Spanish. But just those 2. I have realized that as I get into more difficult concepts, the stuff I used to think was hard becomes easy to me. I'm training to become a software engineer if that helps to tell the field. I think you are right about the math and I'll get some books so I can get started
  • 0
    @CodeMasterAlex I'm going into software engineering if that helps to know how much math I'll need. I will find some books and grab as much info as I can. It helps to know that you are doing well and don't have a strong math background. That really is a relief for me so thank you
  • 1
    @ApplePieStyle I am in the same situation you are. A friend of mine who is a ML engineer in IBM told me that (High School Level Maths + Discrete Maths) is more than enough to become a good programmer in any programming field. I am learning maths from scratch on KhanAcademy. Here you can get the best videos on Complete High School maths. but for Discrete Maths you need to buy an book from Amazon. With maths you can easily undersrand Data Structures & Algorithms which is the requirement of every big or medium scale IT company.
  • 1
    My personal opinion is that almost every engineering/science based field is basically just applied math. You most probably won’t need it, but it will definitely help. Just like it’s very handy to know some Latin if you’re into languages.
  • 1
    @i-am-compiler I'll check it out for sure and find some books to study independently. Thanks for the help. I really appreciate it!
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