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jungykang

Math EE on Stats and Medicine

Hey guys, so I'm doing my EE on mathematics and I need it to be connected to medicine, because thats what i'm applying for, and I thought after spending a month or two on modelling it would be a crazy waste of time and overly difficult, so I decided on a statistical focus.

I want something interesting but I'm not sure how I would be able to score an A/B mark, especially as statistics seem too simplistic (?).

I take math hl currently, doing well, and all suggestions are welcome.

I'm mainly thinking about medical issues such as rising rates of cancer/obesity/celiac disease/autoimmunity and seeing if they are actually caused by issues in lifestyle/environmental factors or are being caused by our naturally growing and developing (economically, hygenically, etc...) population/world. Would that works as a nice topic?

Thanks in advance.

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1. You don't have to make your EE related to the course you want to study later on. Most of the time in the admissions process, unless you specifically mention it and reference it in your personal statement/interview/etc they're not going to ask about it or care. If you really like mathematics to want to do an EE on it, go ahead, but it doesn't have to be connected to medicine.

2. With math EEs you're more or less solving some sort of mathematical problem. This is different from something you do in class, this is a much more complex, difficult problem you investigate using mathematical theory and research, and you answer it giving mathematical proof. The answer you gave does not really sound like a math EE, more like a health topic that you're using statistics to help analyze. It would be insufficient for a math EE topic.

To get an idea of what kinds of topics are appropriate for math EEs, try reading the EE guide to see what works. Good places to get inspired for questions to work with are past math olympiad questions and textbooks that contain a list of investigations. You don't have to go out and solve an unsolved mathematics conundrum (save trying to solve the Navier-Stokes equations for turbulence to the mathematicians), but it should be more complex than something you'd do in class.

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I think it's also worth noting that hypothesis testing in general isn't really an ideal for an EE, because of the nature of the topic. Having taken the stats option, a large part of it is about applying formulas, you aren't given any means to understanding the derivation (stuff relating to bivariate distributions and t-tests especially). As a result, the EE would likely end up as just taking a bunch of data, applying standardized tests and/or inappropriate tests and coming up with a simple conclusion. To make things worse, you can't apply many of the standard tests for correlation because health-related issues are influenced by so many different factors - you won't really get a simple answer.

As mentioned above, for an EE in maths it's best to start by getting ideas and such by looking around, find a topic/field of interest and work from there.

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1. You don't have to make your EE related to the course you want to study later on. Most of the time in the admissions process, unless you specifically mention it and reference it in your personal statement/interview/etc they're not going to ask about it or care. If you really like mathematics to want to do an EE on it, go ahead, but it doesn't have to be connected to medicine.

2. With math EEs you're more or less solving some sort of mathematical problem. This is different from something you do in class, this is a much more complex, difficult problem you investigate using mathematical theory and research, and you answer it giving mathematical proof. The answer you gave does not really sound like a math EE, more like a health topic that you're using statistics to help analyze. It would be insufficient for a math EE topic.

To get an idea of what kinds of topics are appropriate for math EEs, try reading the EE guide to see what works. Good places to get inspired for questions to work with are past math olympiad questions and textbooks that contain a list of investigations. You don't have to go out and solve an unsolved mathematics conundrum (save trying to solve the Navier-Stokes equations for turbulence to the mathematicians), but it should be more complex than something you'd do in class.

Although I found your answer to be informative, after speaking to representatives of medicine admissions from the unis i want to apply for, they told me it does help quite considerably to focus on medicine, so I definately will.

And I'm sure its not generalized to only "solving a mathematical problem" seeing some exemplars online that have gotten As and Bs. But I do definately agree with that mathematical theory part. I was considering to investigate a certain theory/concept, in my case statistics and from there t-tests and such, to solve a question: are the rising rates of __________ caused by _________ or is it due to other factors. And i was thinking that although it wouldnt be what you see as mathematical proof, but as applied mathematics to an extent. would this not be the case?

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I think it's also worth noting that hypothesis testing in general isn't really an ideal for an EE, because of the nature of the topic. Having taken the stats option, a large part of it is about applying formulas, you aren't given any means to understanding the derivation (stuff relating to bivariate distributions and t-tests especially). As a result, the EE would likely end up as just taking a bunch of data, applying standardized tests and/or inappropriate tests and coming up with a simple conclusion. To make things worse, you can't apply many of the standard tests for correlation because health-related issues are influenced by so many different factors - you won't really get a simple answer.

As mentioned above, for an EE in maths it's best to start by getting ideas and such by looking around, find a topic/field of interest and work from there

So do you think it'd be possible to investigate the derivations and such, and then apply it to the topic as a whole later to make it a more sufficient EE?

And ,the health related issues I definately understand that it's caused by different factors, but at this moment im looking around- so do you by chance have any suggestions of what I could do in medicine for my EE?

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So do you think it'd be possible to investigate the derivations and such, and then apply it to the topic as a whole later to make it a more sufficient EE?

And ,the health related issues I definately understand that it's caused by different factors, but at this moment im looking around- so do you by chance have any suggestions of what I could do in medicine for my EE?

Not really, since the derivations (for a t-test especially) would probably be too difficult and that doesn't lend itself for an investigation anyway. It may be possible to still consider various methods of hypothesis testing and try create your own, but I'm not too sure if it'll work out particularly nicely. This would stray quite a bit from medicine though, since you'll probably end up having to take a simpler, theoretical situation to get meaningful results (it could work though, it may be worth a try if you are interested).

To be honest, I don't think you should forcefully try to incorporate medicine-related topics into a maths EE. It just doesn't work out, a maths EE is focused on the maths itself If you want to do something medicine-related, a science-based EE is much more suitable - plus that would actually help for university admissions. Having a maths EE with some medicine-related ideas likely is not what the uni representatives you spoke to had in mind, since it doesn't show any interest nor understanding about medicine.

On a general note, I personally do think it's a lot easier to write an EE when you have a focused question/problem. It is possible to get a high grade without one, but I think goal-based maths EE's generally makes it easier to write an essay with sufficient and original mathematical content. I initially tried to write a non-problem based EE myself, but it just doesn't really work out particularly nicely, you just end up quoting existing results.

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You don't know what you want. I am not trying to be mean! Sit down and think about what you want to achieve or present with your essay. Medicine is a large field and all the topics you mentioned above are also very broad. Try to define a few research questions and after that try to think of a way to approach those questions. Ask people here or do some research. 4000 words might seem a lot but you will hit the limit very fast if you don't focus on one single thing.

I did a math EE however it's still has not been graded. During the first month I was basically doing the same thing as you. Searching for a topic but with no goal. I wasted a lot of time like this. When I finally decided to set a goal for the essay I found my topic. I did some research and found a way to answer my research question. After this I started teaching myself the stuff I did not know but was required for the essay. Just be careful not to take on to much because you will end up with a lot of math that you need to learn. This happened to me and it took me a long time to finish my essay.

Your essay can be connected to medicine. However you need to be more precise. You can prove some kind of formula or derive an expression that you will apply latter in the essay. You will definitely apply math in the real world however you will first need to give proof and reasoning for the mathematics that you are going to be using

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You don't know what you want. I am not trying to be mean! Sit down and think about what you want to achieve or present with your essay. Medicine is a large field and all the topics you mentioned above are also very broad. Try to define a few research questions and after that try to think of a way to approach those questions. Ask people here or do some research. 4000 words might seem a lot but you will hit the limit very fast if you don't focus on one single thing.

I did a math EE however it's still has not been graded. During the first month I was basically doing the same thing as you. Searching for a topic but with no goal. I wasted a lot of time like this. When I finally decided to set a goal for the essay I found my topic. I did some research and found a way to answer my research question. After this I started teaching myself the stuff I did not know but was required for the essay. Just be careful not to take on to much because you will end up with a lot of math that you need to learn. This happened to me and it took me a long time to finish my essay.

Your essay can be connected to medicine. However you need to be more precise. You can prove some kind of formula or derive an expression that you will apply latter in the essay. You will definitely apply math in the real world however you will first need to give proof and reasoning for the mathematics that you are going to be using

Thanks alot of this answer- i think i found out what i need to do.

Just out of curiosity, which topic did you do yours on?

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You don't know what you want. I am not trying to be mean! Sit down and think about what you want to achieve or present with your essay. Medicine is a large field and all the topics you mentioned above are also very broad. Try to define a few research questions and after that try to think of a way to approach those questions. Ask people here or do some research. 4000 words might seem a lot but you will hit the limit very fast if you don't focus on one single thing.

I did a math EE however it's still has not been graded. During the first month I was basically doing the same thing as you. Searching for a topic but with no goal. I wasted a lot of time like this. When I finally decided to set a goal for the essay I found my topic. I did some research and found a way to answer my research question. After this I started teaching myself the stuff I did not know but was required for the essay. Just be careful not to take on to much because you will end up with a lot of math that you need to learn. This happened to me and it took me a long time to finish my essay.

Your essay can be connected to medicine. However you need to be more precise. You can prove some kind of formula or derive an expression that you will apply latter in the essay. You will definitely apply math in the real world however you will first need to give proof and reasoning for the mathematics that you are going to be using

Thanks alot of this answer- i think i found out what i need to do.

Just out of curiosity, which topic did you do yours on?

Calculating the perimeter of an ellipse ( arc length of an ellipse). The main part of the essay focused on explaining and giving proof for the method. The last part of the essay was using the result in real life ( this was the reason why I started the essay).

I had to teach my self about the properties of an ellipse, parametric equations of an ellipse, arc length of curves, finding the arch length by using the parametric equations, extend my knowledge of the binomial theorem, the integration methods required for the process, a few sigma notation properties and I had to achieve a much higher level of reasoning and algebra skills. Just imagine how simple my original idea was and how much I had to learn before I was able to write my essay. I ended up with 3949 words because I had to explain everything in my essay. Writing sentences to all of my equations and explaining everything in detail was the only way I could show the examiner that I actually understand all of this. Remember to show your reasoning in your essay.

I had a lot of fun writing my essay so it was worth it. If you enjoy math and don't care about the amount of time it takes you to finish your essay then chose some challenging topic. If you don't want to much work then chose an easier one

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