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BA in Mathematics


Mathematics is the symbolic language of nature. More than numbers and symbols, it encompasses the logic and methodology of reasoning and provides the tools for making decisions, interpreting observations, explaining natural phenomena, and solving problems.

Mathematics is both a subject with widespread applications to the sciences and social sciences and a subject of intrinsic intellectual interest. The mission of the Department of Mathematics is to provide students with a solid understanding of and appreciation for both aspects of the subject.

All students should:

  • Learn the mathematical skills necessary to be successful in their chosen field and become an informed and responsible citizen.
  • Appreciate the relevance of mathematics in society.

Students completing a major in mathematics also should:

  • Be prepared for employment in mathematics-related careers in fields such as business, science, government and education.
  • Be prepared to pursue graduate studies in mathematics.
  • Be able to work collaboratively on mathematical problems and effectively communicate these results.
  • Be exposed to technological innovations used in mathematics.
  • Be able to read and use the current mathematical literature to further their own education.

Curriculum + Requirements

The mathematics major provides a broad background in undergraduate mathematics that prepares students for graduate study, and for positions in teaching, business and government.

The major in mathematics consists of:

Course Title Credits
MA 141 Calculus of a Single Variable I (UC) 3
MA 142 Calculus of a Single Variable II (UC) 3
MA 229 Linear Algebra (UC) 3
MA 241 Vector Functions & the Geometry of Space 3
MA 242 Multivariable Calculus 3
MA 301 Foundations of Advanced Mathematics 3
MA 321 Abstract Algebra 3
MA 341 Advanced Calculus 3
MA 490 Mathematics Senior Seminar 3

Plus, three electives chosen from the following:

Course Title Credits
MA 285 Applied Statistics 3
MA 300 Special Topics 3
MA 318 Cryptography 3
MA 361 Numerical Analysis 3
MA 365 Ordinary Differential Equations 3
MA 370 Number Theory 3
MA 371 Mathematical Statistics 3
MA 372 Mathematical Statistics 2 3
MA 378 Mathematical Modeling 3
MA 400 Special Topics in Mathematics 3
MA 421 Advanced Algebra 3
MA 441 Complex Variables 3
MA 451 Point-Set Topology 3
MA 580 Geometry 3

While students must consult with their major adviser in planning a course of study, the department provides the following recommendations.

  • Students interested in teaching should consider MA 285.
  • Students interested in statistics should consider MA 371, MA 372 and MA 378.
  • Students interested in actuarial studies should consider MA 285, MA 361, MA 371, MA 372, AC 101, EC 111, and CSC 110; and possibly EC 112, FIN 201, FIN 310, CIS 212.

Double Majors:
The Department of Mathematics encourages double majors. Common double majors include computer science, economics, finance or chemistry.

Minor in Mathematics

To complete a minor in mathematics, a student is required to complete six courses, including MA 141, MA 142, MA 229, and three electives chosen in consultation with the department chairperson. At least one of the three electives must be at the 300-level. Courses numbered below MA 141 may be approved at the discretion of the department chairperson.