Computer science, math, and school

Let me be frank, I am not doing well in math.

I used to do well, but right now, in my senior year of high school, it feels like drowning in an endless pool of numbers with no reason.

Part of it might be due to online class and me not adapting to the way the materials are taught. The teacher prefer to give videos and then tell us to do exercises.

While part of me do want to blame the teacher, my friend who usually gets the same grade as me, got high marks and did really well.

This just really hurts my confidence in math and even other lessons in general. Tests feels less like a battle of intelligent and more like a coin-toss in luck.

I am planning to go to computer science in university, and I sure don’t want to halfheartedly try to drag my way through university when I know it’s my parents’ money I am spending.

So friends, please give me advice regarding math, and how I can overcome this mental block, and also how I can regain my confidence in math.

Side note: Resources to prep students for math in computer science degree is also something I need, so if you guys know any good channel or books, please send them my way

freecodecamp youtube channel has released a few weeks ago tutorials in maths

also I really like Khan Academy, and am reviewing maths there

do not give up, find different sources, find someone that can explain you stuff one on one, find the same arguments explained in different ways

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A significant percentage of the professional programmers I know, with CS (or similar) degrees, have failed a math class or repeated a math class or dropped a math class.

I have a CS degree and I repeated Calculus 1 because I did not get it in high school.
@JeremyLT is almost done with a PhD in math, but he almost failed his first semester of math in college.

Learning takes work and sometimes certain subjects or situations make it even more work that usual.

sucking at something is the first step towards being sort of good at something


Everyone learns math differently, and everyone learns different types of math differently.

It’s ok to sometimes feel like you’re hopelessly outclassed by something and be really struggling. It happens to me, and I’ve been doing high level math for 15 years now and serious programming for 4.

You can do it, if its what you want and the struggle is worth it to you. (totally OK to decide that its not, by the way)

One nice thing is that the math you need for CS you can ask questions about here on FCC!


The fact you aren’t doing good in math now is a sign of your work ethic not your skills. If you put in the work you can and will improve and be able to learn what you need to learn.

I hated and did terrible in math throughout my school career. As such most of my issues in middle/high school with math were simply due to not paying attention and not giving much effort. I only turned things around in college once I got slapped with a massive F and had to re-take the class. This doesn’t mean I turned into a star 100% student, but I did end up passing, and getting through it.

Its true your currently going through a once in lifetime situation with schooling that makes it different and potentially harder to learn. However, if you know your math skills need improvement, you should work on improving them, at least to an acceptable point. (C’s get degrees!)

Be sure to put in the effort, at a certain point in college you will realize you will need to study harder, work harder and actually put in your 100% to pass a class. This could be math, or it could be some other course.

A CS degree is like 50% math, however most of that math is “special CS math” that you probably would never learn about unless you get a CS degree. Stuff like data structures, algorithms, finite automota, and discrete math are all the kinds of “CS math” you’d learn that is totally different than what your probably learning now.

Keep learning, keep studying, and focus on your own weak points to keep improving.
Good luck!

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Whatever level of math you’re doing - I’m sure there’s a course for you on Coursera or Edx, or wherever.

Use it to suppliment your normal school work - or replace it if you find it better/easier to follow.

The thing with math is that once you fall behind - you fall behind. It’s hard to skip forward and pick up without grasping the earlier material. You can’t do algebra if you can’t add numbers. You can’t do calculus if you don’t understand algebra.

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Hey guys thank you all for responding. It’s just frustrating.

My school has two math class, advanced and basic. I am in advanced and the teachers basically just links us videos on youtube and give us exercise, without giving further detail. Videos should be supplement not the main way we learn. And when he does explain, he explains after we do the exercises, and only explain one number.

I am sorry if I seem whiny. I’m not sure if I hate math or the teacher’s teaching style. It’s just frustrating.

Thanks again