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ERIC Number: EJ819168
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Dec
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0268-3679
Why Mechanics Should Be Integral to Secondary School Mathematics
Rowlands, Stuart
Teaching Mathematics and Its Applications: An International Journal of the IMA, v27 n4 p187-199 Dec 2008
Mechanics has never been the most popular subject in A-level mathematics, the UK's public examination for 16-18-year olds, either with students, teachers or educators. The attempts to popularize mechanics have failed and it is conceivable that the subject will be dropped from the A-level syllabus in the foreseeable future. This article argues the importance of mechanics and why it should be integral to secondary school mathematics: Mechanics is the exemplar of mathematical modelling, is the logical point of entry for the enculturation into scientific thinking and provides the means to develop an understanding of the relationship between mathematics, the theoretical objects of science and the way science and mathematics speak of the world. It enables learners across the "ability range" to think in the abstract and as such should be taught prior to the 6th form, that is, prior to the UK's post-compulsory level of education.
Oxford University Press. Great Clarendon Street, Oxford, OX2 6DP, UK. Tel: +44-1865-353907; Fax: +44-1865-353485; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Secondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom