Making math and science compulsory?

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has called for mathematics and science to be made compulsory for all students finishing high school.

Australia has seen a sharp decline in teaching of math and sciences. At present, math and science are only compulsory until year 10. Statistics released by the University of Sydney show that, between 2003 and 2013, final year high school enrolments in Advanced and Extension Mathematics have steadily deceased. In the same period, the number of students choosing not to enrol in mathematics at all have significantly increased.

This is despite universities moving towards imposing requirements which demand mathematics as a prerequisite to entry to a number of courses, including science, engineering, psychology, medicine, commerce and law. Along the same lines, the University of Technology, Sydney, is in the process of commencing a program which would require every student, regardless of their degree, to complete a compulsory numeracy subject before they graduate.

The Australian Government has recently sought to make STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) a priority, with widespread support from the academic and business communities. The chair of the National Committee for Mathematical Sciences has made the frightening observation that “We are leeching out the mathematical skills from the majority of the population … Apprentices are becoming bricklayers who don’t know how many bricks to order and students are becoming nurses who are unable to work out dosages“. Click here for the full article.

The future of Australian industry and jobs will be driven to a significant degree by technology and the skills which are most compatibility with new those technologies. It is critical that students and young people are equipped with the necessary skills to embrace that future. At Aspire Tuition, we aim to generate passion in our students for all subjects, including math and science. We understand that these subjects help to lay the foundations for our students’ futures, regardless of what career they intend to pursue.

-Aspire Tuition Team

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