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Do you tell people that you have dyscalculia?

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Why do all of the high paying careers require math and science?
#1 Print Post
Posted on April 28 2011 10:13 PM

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I was originally interested in computer science or some other technology/computer oriented career.
I just learned that I'll have to take several calculus courses to get my bachlors degree in computer science.

I wanted to go in to a technology career because people who have knowledge in technology are always needed and the average starting salary for people with a bachlors degree in these careers can go as high as $60,000 a year.

This is making me very depressed.

This is what I'm interested in and I don't want to settle for a job I won't be happy at.
#2 Print Post
Posted on April 28 2011 11:47 PM

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Hi Abrazame,
Computer science and related fields do pay well. Our forum member classclownfish has a computer career,... doing software, I think. I don't know how she managed the math courses, or if she found a way around them somehow. She is in the U.S. Are you in the U.S? I suppose that the math is difficult for everyone, even those who are not dyscalculic. But are you here because you've had special difficulty with math? Have you been tested and diagnosed as yet? Actually, the waivers and substitutions for math only apply for the basic Bachelor's degrees in non-math Majors. Most likely, none of those courses that you mentioned would NOT be waived or substituted even with an air tight diagnosis by a Ph. D. They want to make sure that those '$60.000 and up' jobs stay reserved for the 'math people'. ;) - jus'

P.S. I'm editing my post because I left out the very important word 'NOT', completely reversing what I meant to say in my next-to-the last sentence.
Edited by justfoundout on May 05 2011 01:20 PM
#3 Print Post
Posted on May 05 2011 12:35 AM

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I was never officially diagnosed but I did have an Iep in high school for having trouble with math. They never gave me a name for it.
I'm getting my GED and I want to start community college.
I will probably get my associates degree first and then move on the a uni for a bachelors degree.

What careers don't involve a lot of math that pays well.
Besides art, because I'm no good at that either.
#4 Print Post
Posted on May 05 2011 12:56 PM

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Lawyers are notoriously bad at math, and the practice of law does not generally involve a lot of math. Law can also be a "back door" into working in a field you like -- if you love health science, for example, but can't do the math to be in a health-related career, you can practice law that deals with that area. Or if you love computers and understand the technology well, you could be very helpful to an intellectual property group (dealing with patents, etc.) or understanding electronic discovery (documents given to the other party in a lawsuit, which involves lots of questions about the way data is stored, whether metadata needs to be produced, etc.).

Law school is an extra three years post-bachelor's degree and job prospects aren't fabulous at the moment, so it definitely has some drawbacks, but it's a non-mathy option.
#5 Print Post
Posted on May 05 2011 01:22 PM

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Along those same lines of thought, Henevere, It's occurred to me that after I get my BA in Art, I might go to law school, because 'art' pays nothing unless you are fabulous, whereas the legal fields of 'intellectual property' and 'art fraud' would surely put food on the table. - jus'
Edited by justfoundout on May 05 2011 01:23 PM
#6 Print Post
Posted on May 09 2011 05:12 AM

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I thought about giong in to something having to do with law.
But I have a 6 month old child.
Would I ever be able to make it that far with a child?

I don't know.
I just feel so stupid. I honestly feel like giving up education.

Other people get to live out their dreams. I feel like it's really unfair.
#7 Print Post
Posted on May 09 2011 12:43 PM
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Abrazame, I know people who have gone through Ph.D. programs with babies. It's not easy, but it is possible. Do you have someone in your life who would be able to help you with childcare like the father of the child, your parents, your siblings, etc.? That would make getting an education a lot easier, to have their help in watching the baby while you go to class.

I would also encourage you not to let yourself fall into the "other people get to live out their dreams, my life is unfair because I have dyscalculia" pit. Everyone has something in their life that is unfair, you aren't the only one, neither am I. Pity parties aren't good for anyone. Yes, having dyscalculia is hard, I will acknowledge that. But so are a lot of things that a lot of people deal with. Physical disabilities are hard. Mental illness is hard. Chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart conditions, asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome, etc. are hard. Poverty is hard. Divorce is hard. Not having a good educational start is hard. Being overweight is hard.

There are a lot of hard things out there that people have to overcome on a daily basis to achieve their goals, so don't let yourself get stuck in the idea that your life is somehow harder than everyone else's and that you'll NEVER be able to achieve your dreams because of this learning disability. If you keep thinking like that, then you really will never achieve anything.

Your mindset is important, and you really do have to go in with the mindset of, "I am going to attain goals X Y Z, dyscalculia be damned." I decided that I wanted to get a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. That degree requires 4 math classes at the university level, 3 of which I have had to repeat. So really it's like I've taken 7 math classes, because I've had to repeat three of them twice. But after this summer, I will finally be done with the math required for my degree and the rest will be smooth sailing. I will be applying to graduate schools for counseling in the fall.

I would not be in the position to do that if I had decided that, "My life is unfair, I feel stupid, dyscalculia is putting this huge roadblock between me and my academic goals." Yes, life is unfair. Yes, I feel stupid some days (and when I'm taking math classes, pretty much every day). Yes, dyscalculia really IS putting a huge roadblock up between me and my academic goals. But it's a surmountable roadblock. It's one that I can get past with enough hard work and an indomitable frame of mind. That whole "where there's a will, there's a way" thing really is true, to an extent - if you see yourself, REALLY see yourself, getting through it and finding a way to attain the goals you set for yourself... you will.

You just have to believe with all your heart that where there's a will, there's a way. I'm not saying that "if I will myself to learn Differential Equations, there's a way I can" because that probably isn't realistic, but if I have the will to either find a way around or find a way to pass the math classes I need for this degree, and I REALLY REALLY REALLY want it, then I'm going to figure out how to make it happen. And I am.
"The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings." - Eric Hoffer
#8 Print Post
Posted on May 09 2011 07:14 PM

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Abrazame, I had my daughter between my third and fourth years at university, then I took a year off, and started law school when my daughter was two. I had some family around to help with child care that first year (I only went to school two or three days a week -- I never did see another student toting around a breast pump!). My daughter started preschool/daycare when I went to law school.

So yes, you can absolutely get that far while being a parent. I'm certainly not the only one who has done it. One of my classmates was hoping to fit the bar exam in before she went into labor with baby #2 - she just made it. One of the female Supreme Court justices - I forget which one - had her kid running around the law journal office while she was editor of the journal in law school. And that was way before women were widely accepted in the practice of law.

As CheshireKat so eloquently says above, where there's a will there's a way. Find your dream and follow it, be tenacious and there isn't much that can hold you back.

And don't forget that there are a lot of careers that are not education-based, if you find that the education part of it is really too much to handle for now. Open up an art shop on etsy, learn to be a plumber, can your own jam to sell, write a book, become a firefighter, go to flight attendant training. Or do all of the above. The money may not be as good, but lower-paying jobs often have the trade-off of being less stressful and less time-consuming. There are many different paths to individual dreams, and the only thing that really stops us from getting there is our own determination.

Best of luck to you, whatever path you choose.
#9 Print Post
Posted on May 09 2011 09:29 PM

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Abrazame, I understand the feeling completely. I wanted to be a dentist for a long time, but I did the research and even though a dentist doesnt use that much math they have to take a bunch of difficult math courses. I was crushed. I thought that dentistry was the only career for me. My mom is a nurse, and her dad is a doctor so i thought I had to do something with medicine. I grew up poor, so having that kind of money was important to me as well.
But my mom, being the wonderful person that she is, reminded me how much I use to love art. She said it would be a waste of talent for me to be a dentist when I could be painting the world.

Just try to find other things you are interested in or you're good at. If you really have your heart set on a technology career, then you will simply have to try harder. Because you don't have the advantages everyone else has, your hard work will make you more valuable as a person.
Equations are the devil's sentences. -Stephen Colbert
#10 Print Post
Posted on May 10 2011 01:44 PM

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I'm wondering, Abrazeme, if u could do an un-paid internship <being open to "un-paid" may get you in the door more> or "job-shadowing" or even some kinda volunteering at someplace technical so that you may get some experience and some hands-on learning that could assist you later in a classroom setting in learning about the field and give you a bit of an advantage or "head start", especially if you find that the "book-work" or classroom aspect of your studies is more difficult for you and does not give you a chance to show people in the field what you are actually capable of in terms of performance or "thinking outside the box".
#11 Print Post
Posted on May 15 2011 04:53 AM

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Don't sell yourself short. You can do it if you want to do it, you'll just have to find a different path than most other people. But that doesn't mean you can't do it. You can! Smile
#12 Print Post
Posted on May 20 2011 09:22 PM

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To be honest, my true dream is to become a meteorologist.
My passion has always been with weather. Ever since I was a kid.
for a while I considered going to the airforce.

Other than meteorology or a technical career. I have no idea what i want to do.

It's stressful because Ifeel like I am running out of time to figure out what I want to do.
I'm 21 years old and just now getting my GED so I can attend college.

I mean, i should be graduating college next year. Not just starting.

I know for sure I at least want to obtain a bachelors degree at the least. My ultimate goal is to have a masters.
#13 Print Post
Posted on June 20 2011 06:18 AM

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It is you going to study and your dedication is required to have a successful degree. So make the selection with your interesting courses and to flourish in the same.
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