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Question #1119815531Sunday, 26-Jun-2005
Category: Theory Functions Typing Math and science
Is it possible for an NT to be horrible at mathematics and the hard sciences? -- Anonymous
Your Answers: 1+
A1 Mathematics and hard sciences are mostly Te subjects. Te NT should theoretically have no problems with it. Ti NT will have to translate Te into Ti in order to better understand the subject. If to be horrible means to be completely useless, then it is unlikely with NT types, since theoretically they should have some abilities for it. Of course some people can be just openly ignorant about the subject. In this case it doesn't matter if it is an NT or some other type. -- Admin
A2 Quote: "Mathematics and hard sciences are mostly Te subjects. Te NT should theoretically have no problems with it. Ti NT will have to translate Te into Ti in order to better understand the subject." Because of my own experience I have to comment on this. What sets mathematics apart is that the nature of the subject forces you to understand it before you can do anything with it, therefore Ti, who tries this anyway, has an advantage over Te. This is different e.g. in medicine, much better suited for Te, where you have to know which bones are where, without having to understand so much. What types do mathematicians have? From what I've found out so far they are usually introvert or ENTp. I would claim the classic mathematician's type is INTj. My professor at university was INFp. Some INFjs I know are interested in mathematics. I also suspect (but am not sure yet) that some of the best mathematicians are ISTp - maybe they have the ability to use their brain like a machine, without distraction. I could imagine an INTp mathematician. But I find it difficult to imagine an ENTj or ISTj university mathematician (although there are certainly exceptions). They may however study it in order to apply it in business where it can nowadays be useful. Ok, I have to stop here because I want to play ball. The rain has stopped. -- Martin
A3 Thanks, Martin, for recommending the Simon Singh's book "Fermat's Last Theorem", which really shows what mathematics is all about. Still, unless you are a proper mathematician who studies mathematics as a science, the mathematics you are likely to encounter would be a Te version of it, i.e. practical mathematics. Te mathematics is based upon proven theorems and formulas and allows one to quickly calculate the result without going much into details. This is the most common form of mathematics. However, in order to obtain formulas one needs to be able to prove theorems leading to the formulas and this is what proper mathematicians do, which is mostly Ti mathematics. So thanks again for your comment. -- Admin
A4 Not that it is as edifying as the other comments, but I am an INTp, and I am poor at math. I suppose it might be said that I am interested more in the systems, and not the results. An INTj friend of mine is terrible at math as well. -- Holly
A5 I am a fellow INTj, and I really don't think its the actual math that the INTj is good at. I think it the distinctions between things that makes them good. I find that I don't calculate things well, but I tend to find new ways of doing problems all the time. I find that its not the actual math that I am good at... but the processes of the math. -- Renegade
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A6 I don't know many intjs who excel in math. -- g
A7 I am an ENTp and I'm very good at advanced math. No problem here, but it requied some training in the past. -- f
A8 Being good at mathematics? What's that? Here are a few possibilities: 1. Being good at absorbing what *others* teach you at school/college? This means best grades in math subjects. This is ST's field because you have to listen to the teacher and apply what you hear. NT's are more devoid of reality so they learn by themselves using their intuition and logic. 2. Learning math for yourself from a book and trying to prove a theorem by yourself using your intuition and logic, or to construct a new theorem. ST's can't construct a new theorem because they don't think intuitively enough. This means that they should try to guess different possible connections between numbers to prove a theorem. Also, notice that it's a matter of person's interest in particular field of math and also how much someone works/thinks in math. -- drake (entp)
A9 i normally test out as intj or intp. mathematics are fascinating to me, but i rarely completed the homework. this leads to poor grades in math. it seems most instructors in this field want visual proof that you have done the work and understand, as opposed to giving a few tests and concentrating more on exploring the systems that compose the field of mathematics. the other problem is that some NTs lack attention to detail. writing out arithmetic or being asked to go without a calculator seems redundant because the answer will be the same regardless of if i use a calculator, "show my work" or not (fairly sure these types are STs.) could different functions not be applied to different fields of math as well? i imagine someone whose sole interest is geometry might process things in a somewhat different manner than someone whose main interest is algebra/physics/biology. it's difficult to simplify this all down to "math and sciences." -- g
A10 It is an absolute reality, I guarantee you I am an NT and I reek at the hard sciences, and am terrible in Math. (I do enjoy astronomy and genetics, however. But I am not necessarily good at what I like.) -- econdude
A11 I think that drake said it all. We now have ST and NT approaches to math, so I wander, if it would be nice if someone could give us where are NFs and SFs good at this. -- K21
A12 As and INFJ, math was like second nature to me,I could have become a mathmetician-I chose motherhood. My favorite was geometry-I would not settle for just one theory, I had to find all possible answers. That's pretty much how I approach life too. I won't always accept just one answer-there has to be other possiblities to the why and how of things going on around us, to the nature of existence. -- aj
A13 In fact, I believe NT to be required for math, but there are variations. For the more practical math, obviously would be useful, so ENTj or INTp, but the essence of math is internal understanding, so ENTp or INTj. A great question of math is whether it is logic or intuition, and in fact as one interested in math I believe logic to be a tool for intuition, but they fulfill different rolls. Creating new math requires very creative intuition, so since INTj's have as their creative function, they are more apt to revolutionize mathematics, such Newton who developed calculus, which wasn't absolutely formally proven until two centuries later! (Newton himself did a lot of intuitive mathematical actions without proof.) That's why a creative would be useful to prove existing mathematics. In summary, there are different aspects to math, and a functional viewpoint can predict probable talents. -- Joey
A14 Elaborating on A13, and has a corresponding dichotomy in mathemtical community as a preference for "problem solving" as opposed to "theory building". Both are important aspects of doing mathematics. Though not as productive or novel perhaps as the works of , I think also have their roles in mathematics as those who "deepen" the subject by connecting different areas of mathematics and broadening the understanding of the subject. Their approach is to amass a large amount of mathematical knowledge([Te] function), and seeking global patterns that leads to new insights([Ni] function). They are also found in applied areas in which synthesis and materialization of ideas are more important than their discovery. -- Anonymous
A15 I am an ENTp with trouble grasping mathematical concepts at the beginning. However, I tend to fare extremely well once I focus. On my college entrance test, surprisingly, I scored highest in my Math section. However, I still decided to take up a degree in the arts. Am currently in the media industry as a producer, although I enjoy reading up on scientific and mathematical theory on my own -- sylvia
A16 A10 - econdude, howzit. hav'ent read all answers....A14 was excellent...copied that stuff to a text document. A10...like genetics...biology..and not necassarily good at it,..sure u found your reason for that in A9's ans, u will see that A14 shows your prospero period, i.e. the period when u should out-do others in the biologies. . if i had to answer why u reek at the hard sciences, well, i could'ent but i would suggest that u enjoy your language of preferance, cause undergrad years are years in-which these preferances are built. greetings. -sirac son of -- Anonymous
A17 istp and excell..i think due to my troubleshooting and creativity when refining fixed ideas and theorims. Systematically is introverted thinking -- istp
A18 Type should not be mixed up with abilities or intelligence. To be Thinker only means that you prefer to use logic based on facts. Those facts can be numbers, rules/law, grammar(rules, too), or even relationships if they help you to reach a goal, which can be creating a theory of human behavior. Analysing a picture or a novel or a peom is an act of thinking as well, if you tend to reduce it to specific terms, e.g. if you localise the part of the catastrophe in a classical drama. If you are NT then you are likely to chose any sience. The question is how you deal with information. In an extreme version you would also use NT when analysing football results. The Intuition allows you to recognize the invisible and inaudible, you use it for dealing with mathematical terms as well as for interpreting the meaning a symbol in a painting. I am an INT(can not exactly define j or p) and I am planning to study archaeology, because of the combination of interpreting signs (Intuition) and use of strict classification vocabulary (Thinking). It is a question of choice. If you as an NT choose to study maths then you will be quite successful, but if you do not care about formulas and like literature more then it is a logical consequnece that your abilities in maths will be very undeveloped, while your ability to recognize allegories and metaphors will increase. -- Anonymous
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