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Graduate Program

MS Requirements

The Master of Science in Mathematics provides the student with basic graduate training in mathematics. Master of Sciences students may choose widely ranging programs of study that may focus on pure or applied mathematics. The coursework in each case is designed to be flexible in order to prepare the student for employment in the mathematics profession either in academia, in government, in business and industry or to pursue further graduate education. Completion of the program requires grades of B- or better in all courses. Please see the MS Handbook for further details and procedures of the program.

Course requirement:
At least 9 courses in total and at least 30 credits, with at least four courses numbered above 200. A passing grade on a PhD qualifying exam would satisfy one of the 200-level course requirements, but note that 9 courses are still needed for the degree. If the 9 courses do not add up to 30 credits, a student may take any Math or mathematically-significant related fields course above 100 toward the degree to reach the credit limit. Unless otherwise stated the following courses are excluded from counting toward the degree: Math 192, 193, 195-196, 291-292, 295-298.

The course requirements are broken down into three categories plus a thesis option.

  1. Mathematical Breadth:
    • 3 regularly offered Math courses above 120.
    • 1 course must be at the 200 level.
    • Each course must be in a separate discipline, indicated by the 2nd digit of the course numbering.
    • Special topics courses or reading courses in a given area must be approved by the Graduate Committee.
  2. Concentration:
    • 4 regularly offered Math courses above 120.
    • In consultation with the student's adviser and with approval from the graduate committee, students may choose the four courses such that they form a concentration in a sub-discipline of mathematics. This will then be indicated on the student's transcript. Concentrations may be as broad as "Computational Mathematics" or "Topology", but also very specific if there are courses to match. Please see the MS Handbook for more examples. A student can choose predetermined concentrations, choose their own, or not choose one at all.
    • Special topics courses or reading courses in a given area must be approved by the Graduate Committee.
  3. Electives:
    • 2 courses, which can be any Math course numbered above 100 OR "related fields" courses.
    • This may include upper level, mathematically significant courses in Computer Science, Physics, Economics, or other departments. Please see the list of courses that have already been approved and disapproved in this category. If a course is not listed there, then a student can ask the Graduate Committee to approve it as an elective course.

  4. Masters Thesis Option:
    • Equivalent to 1 concentration course and 1 elective course.
    • Satisfies 1 of the 4 200-level overall course requirements.
    • A student fulfills this requirement by writing an expository paper on a specific topic in mathematics under the direction of a member of the department, and upon completion, presenting it before a committee of three or more faculty members. Please see MS Handbook for more details.
    • Students must enroll in courses Math 295 and 296 in their final year of study, which account for 5 credits each toward the 30 credits, but not toward the 7 total courses needed.