The Importance of Taking Science Courses in Community College

by A Guest Author

There seem to be two main types of students: those that are interested in technical pursuits that fall under the headings of math and science and those that prefer more creative subjects like language, music, and art, for example. Although there are a rare few that are equally strong with both left- and right-brain functions, the vast majority of students tend to veer towards one side of the spectrum or the other, including students that transfer from community college to Ivy League.

So if you would classify yourself as a band or theater geek or a poetry-loving bookworm, you might not see the point in taking science courses in community college, beyond the onus to complete your general community college education requirements. It probably didn't help that all through school you were plagued by useless platitudes like "science is all around us" or "technology requires an understanding of science". As you are probably well aware, such vague catchphrases simply aren't true. But science is important, and community college can offer you the opportunity to realize that, perhaps for the first time.

Up until now your scientific education has been dictated by curriculum. But once you make it to the collegiate level you can more or less determine which classes you're going to take. So if you hated dealing with specimens in biology, perhaps you'd rather lean towards something like Earth science or physics. On the other hand, you may discover that while fetal pig dissection wasn't really your bag, uncovering the mysteries of the human body through an anatomy/physiology course is a lot more intriguing. And since you have to earn a certain number of science credits anyway in order to complete your GE requirements you might as well choose a discipline that appeals to you in some way.

But if you just don't like science, what can you possibly hope to get out of these classes? As it turns out, scientific knowledge can be extremely valuable in all kinds of ways you never imagined. For example, the tenets of physics can be applied to many real-world situations. If you enjoy roller derby, physics can help you to understand how the use of centrifugal force helps the jammer to slingshot around corners in order to pick up speed. Or maybe you love to cook, in which case your chemistry courses can help you to understand the process that takes place when you heat sugar (causing it to caramelize). And of course, a basic knowledge of human anatomy can have all kinds of useful applications.

Even more important, however, is the ability to operate using the scientific method. Thinking philosophically and abstractly can definitely be handy, but there are times when using reason to sift through the facts is equally valuable. Why are you a student? You want to learn, right? Of course, most students want to learn something specific, a certain set of knowledge and skills that will lead to a career of their choosing, but pushing the boundaries of how you think can only help you in all of life's pursuits. So even if you aren't terribly keen on science, you should see the inherent value in taking the time to ask: what is science, and how can it help you? When you approach it from this angle you may find that the classes become exponentially more interesting, not to mention valuable.

This post was written by A Guest Author

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