Jennifer Titus, WTSP

St. Petersburg, Florida -- On a local college campus, it's a fact students have an opinion when it comes to algebra.

"It's useful if you can remember it," says Kyle Uber, a senior in college.

Some don't have a problem with the course.

"I think of annoying problems I don't need in the rest of my world," says Alex Bailey, sophomore in college.

And Bailey isn't alone. A new study suggests that all of these equations may be hurting a student more than helping them and only 5 percent of jobs use algebra.

"Currently in the United States we have 4 million 15-year-olds and every single one of them is being made to take algebra. This is just not unfair and ridiculous. A lot of those students will fail class," says Andrew Hacker, professor and author.

Hacker's new book, "The Math Myth and Other STEM illusions," is what has started this conversation, saying 1 out of 5 students don't graduate high school. Why?

"It's not because they are stupid. They just don't have aptitude for algebra. There should be other options and alternatives," says Hacker.

And for students who took the algebra one end-of-course exam last spring, only 56% passed in Pinellas County and 69% in Hillsborough.

"I'm saddened this shouldn't be happening," says Hacker.

And while Hacker has a big opinion, so do other professors and even college students, saying that the math equation known as algebra equals success in and out of the classroom.

"You have to have that edge I think," says Uber.

And a career in math can add up. The Mathematical Association of America reports that the top 15 highest-earning college degrees involve some element of math.