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Mathematics Major

Two degrees in Mathematics are offered: Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science. B.A. is the more flexible study program; B.S. is more extensive.

Students who consider majoring in mathematics are strongly encouraged to talk to a mathematics major advisor as soon as possible.

Students who plan to pursue graduate study in mathematics should obtain the B.S. degree and consider taking at least one first-year graduate (600-level) course.

Preliminary requirements

As a preliminary requirement for the mathematics major, students complete 18 credits in the following classes with no grade below a C: MAT 295, 296, 331, 397, and MAT 375. These courses are prerequisites for most upper-division courses. The following sequence is recommended: MAT 295 in the first semester; MAT 296 in the second semester; MAT 331, 397 in the third semester; and MAT 375 when appropriate (as advised by a math major advisor). Computer science students (only) who have credit for CIS 375, and are pursuing a dual major in mathematics, need not take MAT 375.

However, students with knowledge of trigonometry and a year of high school calculus may be able to enter the sequence at MAT 296 or even MAT 397; students with less preparation may be advised to complete MAT 194 before beginning the calculus sequence.

B.A. degree requirements

In addition to the preliminary requirement described above, students are required to complete with an average of at least 2.0 and no grade below D, MAT 412 and 15 additional credits in upper division mathematics (MAT) courses numbered 400 or higher (except 421, 485, and 503), at least two of which are from a single one of the groupings below.

  • Analysis: 511, 512, 513, 554, 562
  • Algebra: 531, 534, 541
  • Finite Mathematics: 531, 541, 545, 551
  • Applied Analysis: 414, 517, 518, 581
  • Probability and Statistics: 521, 525, 526

With consent of the advisor, these groupings may be altered.

B.S. degree requirements

Students interested in pursuing the B.S. degree in mathematics, obtain, in advance, the approval of a mathematics advisor and the department chair with a petition to the effect that the upper division courses to be taken satisfy the requirement for a B.S. degree.

To complete a BS degree, in addition to the preliminary requirement described above, the student is required to complete the following courses with an average of at least 2.0 and no grade below a D:

  • Analysis sequence: MAT 412, 512
  • Algebra sequence: MAT 531, 534
  • Probability and statistics: MAT 521
  • at least one of MAT 414 (differential equations) or MAT 551 (geometry)
  • 12 additional credits in mathematics (MAT) course numbered 490 or higher, except MAT 503.

With the prior approval of the mathematics major advisor, a student may substitute another mathematics (MAT) course numbered 490 or higher for the MAT 412 requirement. Up to 6 credits in advanced courses in other departments that have been approved in advance by the student's mathematics major advisor may be included in the 12 credits.

Distinction in Mathematics

Distinction in Mathematics is awarded by the Mathematics Department upon completion of a B.S. in Mathematics with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.4, a minimum GPA of 3.6 in mathematics (MAT) courses at the 300+ level, and either an A or A- in the Senior Seminar or a high-quality Honors Thesis. See the Mathematics Department undergraduate advisor for additional requirements.