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“math anxiety” that leads some students to avoid subjects involving quantitative reasoning and scientific methods through their entire tenure at Amherst
The broader goal of encouraging greater exposure to quantitative forms of reasoning and the scientific method among all students has no simple solution ... further refinements may be necessary to foster the “quantitative literacy” that a thoughtful citizen must deploy in quotidian judgments about such matters as risk, reward, equity, correlation, and causation ... it appears prudent to develop instruments for assessing the quantitative reasoning of our students and for stimulating new approaches to improving their quantitative literacy ...
Many students graduate from Amherst with no course, or perhaps just one, in mathematics and science
The reaccreditation report suggests that given these low percentages, Amherst should "either reconcile the rhetoric of non-mandatory course distribution guidelines, or adopt requirements."
I'm sure with all the honors, AP, IB, and college courses that applicants typically complete, their quantitative literacy is sufficient.
They make me wonder if upgrading the science facilities at Amherst has been slower in coming, when compared to Williams, Swarthmore, & other LACs, in part because of the open curriculum.
I think it's valid to say an open curriculum can have certain effects.
And there are different schools with different cultures and expectations... so, something for everyone.