I was nearly kicked out of school because of my seeming inability to do well in any of my Calculus classes. As an audio engineer, I wasn’t sure why Calculus was necessary, and the education I received didn’t communicate why it was important either.
As a result, I didn’t have interest in Calculus. It seemed like a hurdle that was intentionally put in front of the students in my focus to weed out people who weren’t “serious” about engineering. It worked. My freshman class was over 120, my graduating class was under 25. The rest either dropped out, switched majors, or changed their focus within the music school.
As I’m working through my prep work, I’m starting to see some of the Calculus I barely remember from my multiple attempts at passing the class and realizing that it could have been helpful in college. Yes, I took Calc I and Calc II, but none of my classes emphasized why it was needed. Even if we weren’t going to be doing math problems in the studio, it was a part of the technology that we were using.
I have been somewhat worried about encountering Calculus ever since. It’s been over 15 years and I still feel like I escaped those classes instead of learning in them. I’m more hopeful now.