Mathematics, B.S.


A major in mathematics consists of:

The following five core courses which are required of all mathematics majors:

Four additional mathematics courses at the 300 level or above with the following provisos:
  1. one but not both of 217 and 224 may be substituted for one of the 300-level courses;
  2. at least one course must be at the 400 level or above;
  3. an advanced course in another department, with a high mathematical content, may, with the approval of the departmental undergraduate studies committee, may be substituted for one of the 300-level courses.

The year-long Senior Seminar

Suggested Requirements

A freshman should take the appropriate calculus course. Students with no prior calculus course should normally take 121 and 122 during the freshman year. Students with one semester of calculus credit (or equivalent knowledge) should take 131. Students with two semesters of calculus credit should start in 221 and contact a mathematics major advisor during the first semester for major program planning advice. It is also recommended that a prospective mathematics major take Physics 131 and 132 during either the freshman or sophomore year.

Students should take the core courses as early as possible in their programs. After completing 221, the most frequent courses taken next are usually selected from the core courses 309, 305 and 217, 224, 301. It is generally recommended to take 309 before 305, but they can be taken concurrently. Both 205 and 309 are offered every semester. Each introduces the student to more theoretical mathematics than has been encountered in the calculus courses, and these courses provide the foundation for many advanced courses. The course 224 gives an introduction to applied mathematics, and can be counted toward the major (although both 217 and 224 cannot both count). However, majors are advised to forego 224 and instead take 424 after taking 309. There is considerable overlap in 224 and 424, and both may not be taken for credit. The course 301 provides an introduction to probability and statistics, and it is a prerequisite to other courses in the area (602, 603, 604). It should be taken in the sophomore year by students interested in pursuing a concentration in statistics, which includes these four courses in addition to the core courses. Students considering a math major should arrange an appointment with the Director of the Major Program early in their program to get advice on course selection within the major.

The major program is designed to provide the student with a solid foundation during the first two years and provide for a variety of programs of study during the junior and senior years. A major program in mathematics can provide a background for both graduate study and work in a variety of areas of the mathematical sciences such as mathematics, applied mathematics, computer science, and statistics as well as provide preparation for professional schools such as law, medicine, and business. The major program should be designed as early as possible with the student’s goal in mind and with the help of the major advisor.