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CUNY Prof: Math Skills Essential for Social Justice

CUNY Prof: Math Skills Essential for Social Justice

“the ability to understand and use numbers and data in everyday life.”

Math skills are essential for basic life tasks. Why does this need to be politicized as social justice?

Campus Reform reports:

Math skills are ‘essential for social justice,’ CUNY prof claims

A City University of New York (CUNY) professor claims in materials for an online course that math skills are “essential for social justice.”

“Quantitative Reasoning (QR)/Quantitative Literacy (QL) skills are essential for social justice,” Professor Esther Isabelle Wilder writes in the description for an online “Numeracy Infusion Course for Higher Education” (NICHE).

Citing and quoting from a variety of studies and academic papers in support of her contentions, Wilder offers several definitions of QL, which is described most succinctly as “the ability to understand and use numbers and data in everyday life.”

“While research has shown that many students lack the quantitative skills needed for personal and professional success, this disadvantage is particularly acute among minority students,” she asserts, referencing another scholar’s conclusion that this disparity “appears to be critical in explaining the lower probability of employment of young Black Americans relative to Whites.”

Conversely, she says, strong QL skills “have an empowering effect” because “the ability to analyze, present, and communicate about data are critical for success in today’s technologically-oriented and data-driven world.”

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Comments

I distinctly remember a report that math was racist

    Neo in reply to Neo. | July 6, 2017 at 11:19 am

    It’s no surprise that inequality in the U.S. is on the rise. But what you might not know is that math is partly to blame.

    In a new book, “Weapons of Math Destruction,” Cathy O’Neil details all the ways that math is essentially being used for evil (my word, not hers).

    From targeted advertising and insurance to education and policing, O’Neil looks at how algorithms and big data are targeting the poor, reinforcing racism and amplifying inequality.

    These “WMDs,” as she calls them, have three key features: They are opaque, scalable and unfair.
    It’s no surprise that inequality in the U.S. is on the rise. But what you might not know is that math is partly to blame. In a new book, “Weapons of Math Destruction,” Cathy O’Neil details all the ways that math is essentially being used for evil (my word, not hers). From targeted advertising and insurance to education and policing, O’Neil looks at how algorithms and big data are targeting the poor, reinforcing racism and amplifying inequality. These “WMDs,” as she calls them, have three key features: They are opaque, scalable and unfair.

    http://money.cnn.com/2016/09/06/technology/weapons-of-math-destruction/index.html

    HamiltonNJ in reply to Neo. | July 8, 2017 at 7:33 am

    THANK YOU!

Math—and quantitative reasoning in general—are not fertile ground for Progressive hysteria.

    Paul in reply to tom swift. | July 7, 2017 at 5:23 am

    I believe they are. Neo’s post above outlines how the progs are crying foul over the use of data science in ways that isn’t “fair.” In fact this sort of thing has been happening for decades… it’s the Equal Credit Opportunity Act debate all over again, except with a bunch of new “decision areas”. Remember, in a progs mind, if the results aren’t the same for different groups, then the system isn’t “fair.”

    And on the flip side, Obama’s “divide and conquer” approach to community organizing on a national scale showed up how the progs will use data science to split us into tiny groups, make us all feel aggrieved, and then propose more gubmint as the solution.

    Quantitative reasoning is the application of statistics for decision-making. And as Mark Twain said, there are three kinds of Lies: Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics. Progs love to use Climate Science to advance their lies; why wouldn’t they use Data Science to do the same?

The lottery is nothing more than a tax on the mathematically challenged. If you refuse to learn math in school, then you will pay the consequences. If you prefer to arrogantly think yourself as so smart that you need no education, then you pay the consequence of that arrogance. If you take a class that will teach you math from a social justice perspective, then you are likely going to learn how to manipulate numbers to make them appear to state what you want them to state and not what is real. Simply put, there is no substitute for for a good, well rounded education including a lot of math.

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