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Math for Life
Math for Life

Math for Life

Crucial Ideas You Didn't Learn in School


216 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Cloth, EPUB, Mobipocket, PDF

Cloth, $25.00 (US $25.00) (CA $25.00)

Publication Date: November 2013

ISBN 9781937548360

Rights: WOR

Big Kid Science (Nov 2013)


eBook Editions Available

Will it work on my eReader?
Price: $25.00


How can we solve the national debt crisis? Should you or your child take on a student loan? Is it safe to talk on a cell phone while driving? Are there viable energy alternatives to fossil fuels? What could you do with a billion dollars? Could simple policy changes reduce political polarization? These questions may all seem very different, but they share two things in common. First, they are all questions with important implications for either personal success or our success as a nation. Second, they all concern topics that we can fully understand only with the aid of clear quantitative or mathematical thinking. In other words, they are topics for which we need math for life—a kind of math that looks quite different from most of the math that we learn in school, but that is just as (and often more) important. In Math for Life, award-winning author Jeffrey Bennett simply and clearly explains the key ideas of quantitative reasoning and applies them to all the above questions and many more. He also uses these questions to analyze our current education system, identifying both shortfalls in the teaching of mathematics and solutions for our educational future. No matter what your own level of mathematical ability, and no matter whether you approach the book as an educator, student, or interested adult, you are sure to find something new and thought-provoking in Math for Life.


“An insightful look at the crucial role mathematics plays in understanding the complexities of today’s society. . . . The author’s pleasant, conversational style shows that such insight can be developed without obscure or high-level computation. . . . Any reader, but especially parents, politicians, and professional educators, would benefit from reading this book. Summing up: Highly recommended. All levels/libraries.” —Choice Magazine

“Full marks to Jeffrey Bennett for delivering exactly what his title promises. This is not the math your teacher (probably) said you would need in adult life but never did; it’s the math you know you need—but likely don't have.” —Keith Devlin, PhD, author, The Math Gene, and the Math Guy on National Public Radio

“Should be required reading for every American. There’s no more powerful way to equip yourself for our increasingly complex and quantitative world than to read Math for Life.” —K. Shane Goodwin, professor of mathematics, Brigham Young University–Idaho

“Brilliantly illustrates the importance of numeracy in all aspects of life.” —David Taylor, assistant professor of mathematics, Roanoke College

Author Biography

Jeffrey Bennett is an astrophysicist and educator who proposed the idea for and helped develop the Voyage Scale Model Solar System—the first science-oriented exhibit approved for permanent installation on the National Mall in Washington, DC. He is the lead author of college textbooks in four subjects—astronomy, astrobiology, mathematics, and statistics—and has written critically acclaimed books for the general public including Beyond UFOs and On the Cosmic Horizon. He is also the author of children’s books, including those in the Science Adventures with Max the Dog series and The Wizard Who Saved the World. He lives in Boulder, Colorado.