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Undergraduate Curriculum

This page gives an overview of the undergraduate mathematics curriculum. For more information on particular math courses refer to the syllabi.

Getting Started

A student who plans to take any course in mathematics should take the Mathematics Placement Examination (instructions). The placement exam tests the student's background in algebra, trigonometry, analytic geometry, and some topics of calculus. The exam scores are reported to the student's academic advisor who helps with course selection.

  • Elementary Probability and Statistics
    • MAT 121-122 sequence is designed for students who need statistics to satisfy the quantitative skills requirement.
    • MAT 221-222 sequence covers similar material but requires more mathematical maturity of the students. It is appropriate for all students who will need to use statistics in the course of their major program work. (This is often true of students intending to major in the social sciences.)
  • Preparation for Calculus
    • MAT 194 is a pre-calculus course. Mastery of this material is crucial in calculus. MAT 194 can be used to satisfy part of the quantitative skills requirement.
    • MAT 193 is an intensive pre-calculus course for Engineering students in which the material of MAT 194 is combined with the review of algebra.
  • Calculus
    • MAT 295-296-397 is a 3-semester sequence designed for students intending to major or minor in mathematics, physics, or other technical scientific areas that require complete fluency in calculus. If there is any possibility a student will major or minor in mathematics, that student must take the MAT 295-296-397 sequence in order to be eligible for required upper-level courses.
    • MAT 285-286 is a 2-semester sequence for students intending to major in biology or a social science, or to pursue a B.A. degree in chemistry.
    • MAT 284 is a one-semester course designed to meet the needs of Management students.
    • Caution: Movement between sequences is difficult and will lead to some duplication of material, so making the proper choice of calculus sequence at the outset is important. Only one of MAT 284 or 285 may be taken for credit. Students cannot receive credit for MAT 284 or 285 after successful completion of 295. Also, students cannot receive credit for MAT 295 after successful completion of MAT 286.

Majors in Mathematics and Applied Mathematics

The study of Mathematics is not tied to a particular career. Our major and minor programs are flexible enough to allow students with diverse interests to align their mathematical experience with their ultimate goals, or with a second major. Students who complete MAT 295-296-397 and MAT 331 with excellent grades are encouraged to consider mathematics as their major or minor. There are four major programs: click on a program name to see the requirements.

Type of Study Depth of Knowledge Breadth of Applications
Flexible Schedule B.A. in Mathematics B.A. in Applied Mathematics
Intensive Study B.S. in Mathematics B.S. in Applied Mathematics

Our most rigorous program, B.S. in Mathematics, emphasizes the creative, nonprocedural thought processes through which the deeper understanding of Mathematics is attained. Students who excel in it often go on to graduate studies, either in Mathematics or in a related discipline such as Physics or Finance.

Our Applied Mathematics programs (B.A. and B.S.) serve students with a passion for Science, Technology, or Engineering. They emphasize the breadth of applications of Mathematics and its computational aspects, including the principles of mathematical algorithms that drive technological innovations.

Our most flexible program is B.A. in Mathematics. Most of advanced courses required for this degree can be selected by the student, with few constraints.

To declare a major, see Academic Advising.

Five-year Combined Bachelor's-Master's Programs

Any of the four Bachelor's degrees described above can be combined with a Master's degree in Applied Statistics into a 5-year program. Bachelor's degree is awarded after the fourth year and Master's degree after the fifth year. For details, refer to the catalog:

Minors in Mathematics and Applied Statistics

Both of these minors are subject to College-wide minor requirements: At least 15 of the credit for an Arts and Science's minor must be Syracuse University letter-graded coursework. Students must earn a grade point average of at least 2.0 in upper division courses taken at Syracuse University and counted toward the completion of a minor.

Minor in Mathematics is offered by the Mathematics Department. It complements a wide variety of majors in which students can benefit from stronger quantitative skills. The advisor for Mathematics Minor is Professor Adam Lutoborski (see office hours).

Minor in Applied Statistics is offered by the College of Arts and Sciences. It is an interdisciplinary minor involving faculty from around Syracuse University and SUNY ESF. The advisor for Applied Statistics Minor is Professor Pinyuen Chen.

Dual Enrollment with the Whitman School of Management

Prospective undergraduate students can apply for dual enrollment in the College of Arts and Science and the Whitman School of Management. Such students select any Whitman major paired with B.S. in either Mathematics or Applied Mathematics.