Seriousely,do you even use algebraic equations ?

Nurses General Nursing


Since you are only as strong as your weakest link,I would like to know if you use algebra in your daily routine.If you do use it, then to what degree and how is it applied?

I know how to do the operations for a test but I do not "know" what the hell I'm doing and it is soon forgotten.

If this is just prerequisite minutiae then what type of math operations are essential.

This is my weakest subject and since only a 3 credit college level math course is required I want to make it count.

Any suggestions?


First, all algebra teaches you is how to manipulate equations. The concepts are not too in depth, it just shows you over and over how to change equations around without changing their value. Actually, I use my algebra from time to time trying to figure out routine things.

Now you said college level course. Algebra is not a college level course. I think it's not considered college level until you take Calculus or an equivalent stats course.

Either way, math teaches logical thinking and that's the real reason they make most people take it.

Specializes in Peds Homecare.

As much as I hated math too, yes you do use algebra everytime you do dosage calculations. You really need to understand the concepts. I know it's a pain and most drugs are unit dose in the facilities and gotten from a pixus machine. But if you do homecare it is a necessary evil. So I'm sorry it's such a was for me too in school. But their are alot of concepts and formulas you must learn in school to be an effective nurse. One day when you are done you will realize it was all important and necessary. You can do it...I know you can...just keep plugging. God luck and God Bless


The nurses I know don't use algebra. Who uses those algebraic equations? I have asked doctors, lawyers, science teachers, nurses, CPA's (certified public accountants), engineers, building contractors, and more. This is ONE of my pet peeves. It has been my pet peeve since I have tried to help my daughter in algebra in high school. At the same time I was trying to help my daughter, I was going thru nursing school and trying to help my classmates thru college algebra. (I had taken college algebra 15 years earlier). No one uses that algebra stuff that I know of. When I had to try to help my son last year thru his algebra class, I thought, why do they enforce this crap? I know very intelligent people that never use this. We should be concentrating on grammar and spelling. If you read my posts, or any of the posts here, there are a lot of grammar and spelling errors. I know I could use some education on spelling and grammar but NOT ALGEBRA!

When I worked NICU, I used Algebra every day, all the time. If you're gonna work peds or critical care, you will DEFINITELY use it. I use it occasionally now in L&D, but as some of the other posters said, I use it in daily life more often than at work.

Excellent input!

Most of all I can see that I'm not the only one that thinks it's a little contrived.

It was just as I was thinking that the only skill that I seem to be building is critical thinking,although I agree strongly that that's an important skill.

There is actually an course called College Algebra at my junior college.Assumptions are just wishful thinking dressed up with logic so I will ask a counselor.I'm in an course called Pre Algebra now but I cannot imagine the horror if this is actually just "basics".

I can't imagine that I will use something as banal as factoring of quadratic polynomials,but yes,i agree that it builds on other intangible qualities that seem to contribute to logical assesment.

On the subject of gramatica.I use an Websters Dictionary and Thesaurus when making any communication where my words are the only indicator of intelligence.They also make an notebook guide to punctuation.

As you can see by some of the spelling on this board,it is in great need.Quite obviously it takes an level of intelligence beyond the representation of these fundamental errors,however it makes them appear ignorant.

Please keep the comments flowing!

Thank you.

Specializes in LDRP; Education.

Math is my weakest subject, but I do use algebra equations with dosaging, especially in nursery as Kday said.

I also use it to do conversions with some of the drugs we use in OB as well. It's pretty useful to know.

As previously stated, you use basic algebra, actually, more like pre-algebra to perform drug calculations. You do not really use anything more advanced like graphing parabolas, using slope formula, and other ridiculous stuff like that. Algebra taught in college is usually classified under "college algebra" and is very much considered a college course. I have taken calculus, and it will never help me in the field of nursing. Now engineering is a different subject... I hope this helps.

When I first went back to college for my degree in Biology I placed into Algebra I when I took my math placement exam. I had to take Algebra I, II, and Intermediate Algebra just to get to college level. From there, I took Precalc., Calc. I, and Calc. II. I needed Calc. only to take physics. Calc. I have never used outside of physics (except for trig.). But for simple conversions (you have 1 gram of substance:calc. a 3 Molar solution, for ex.) Algebra comes in handy.

Specializes in NICU, PICU, PACU.

If you intend on working critical care, yes you will need basic algebric knowledge for drips! The handy Desired/Have doesn't always work for that!

Hi i am a student an d we are doing research on wut jobs use graphing and slope. I was wondering if u guys use graphing and slope in your work place. Do you guys and if you do what do you guys use graphing and slope for and also how! well that is all i have to ask! thank you very much and thank you for your time!

I use simple algebra everyday in calculating dosages . Even though our chemo drugs are mixed by a pharmacist, we have to calculate the dosages separately to doublecheck.

Also, not every facility uses infusion pumps or unit dosing, so you will need basic algebra to calculate your drip rates and dosages in those facilities.

+ Add a Comment