Thursday, April 24, 2008

Competency #2: Quantitative Skills

The UAS Comptency in Quantitative Skills requires the student to understand and apply basic math.

I do not consider mathematics to be one of my areas of expertise. I am a logical and analytical person but I do not enjoy math. I think that is because I find math isolating and I had trouble in the past finding ways to apply math that held my interest.

In the Humanities Department students are required to take MATH 107 which is Basic Algebra.
I have not finished this course. I have enrolled to take it as a distance course and enlisted the help of a tutor to help keep me on track and make sure that I understand the concepts covered.

However, this past year I have found myself using more and more math! As I have knit more and more I have begun altering and now designing my own knitting patterns and this is actually a great mathematical challenge.

An example of the math involved in adapting a pattern is this sweater:

To make this sweater I combined two different patterns. I wanted to use the cable design from this sweater but keep the overall fit and style from this sweater.
In order to make this work I had to calculate how the repeats of the cable pattern would fit into the hooded sweater pattern as well as make adjustments for my size and shape and the yarn that I had chosen for the project.

When designing a pattern for publication there is the added mathematical challenge of resizing the design while keeping the proportions the same.

There is also some geometry involved in structuring garments to fit 3-dimensional shapes.

These days I am using math all the time!

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