Perceptions of Mathematics among Undergraduate Biomedicine Students

Anthony Morphett

Abstract


Mathematics plays an important role in 21st century biology, but is its importance recognised by students? How do students of the biological and health sciences view the role of mathematics in these disciplines, and the relevance of mathematics in their courses? These considerations may be important as undergraduate biology and biomedicine curricula increasingly incorporate specialised biology-oriented mathematics subjects. In this paper we investigate perceptions amongst undergraduate biomedicine students of the role of mathematics in biomedical science, and the relevance of mathematics in the undergraduate biomedicine curriculum. Student attitudes were found to be generally positive regarding the role of mathematics in biomedical science and its relevance in the curriculum, and persisted throughout the degree programme. Themes arising from student survey responses included whether mathematics is relevant to all or only to some disciplines or careers, and the value of specific mathematical content versus generic skills.

Keywords


mathematics; biomedicine; relevance; attitudes; perceptions

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