Mathematics Major

Mathematics Major Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete a major in Mathematics are expected to:

  • Achieve mastery of a rich and diverse set of mathematical ideas, with particular emphasis on the ideas of algebra and analysis;
  • Achieve an understanding of mathematical abstraction and the nature of mathematical proofs, including the ability to read and write proofs;
  • Communicate mathematics both orally and in writing;
  • Think analytically and creatively to create mathematical models of real world problems, analyze them, and interpret the analysis.

The Mathematics Major

The major program in Mathematics leads to the Bachelor of Science degree and requires the completion of at least 43 semester hours of coursework numbered above MATH 160, including:



No course may be taken on a Credit/No Credit basis for the major program in Mathematics. Transfer students majoring in Mathematics must complete at least 24 semester hours of Mathematics coursework at Allegheny. FSMAT 201 may be counted toward the major in Mathematics. CMPSC 230 (cross-listed as MATH 310) may be counted toward the major in Mathematics. A student who elects to include this course in the Mathematics major program may not also count it within a major or minor program in Computer Science.

The student can prepare for several career areas in the mathematical sciences. Below is a list of the areas followed by courses recommended by the Mathematics Department in addition to the required courses for the major:

  • Actuarial Mathematics: MATH 345 and MATH 346, as well as coursework in Computer Science and mathematical economics.
  • Applied Statistics: MATH 345MATH 346, and

    , and Computer Science courses in data structures, operating systems and computability.

  • Computational and Applied Analysis: MATH 280MATH 341MATH 440, and PHYS 280, as well as strong work in the physical sciences.
  • Operations Research: MATH 345MATH 346MATH 360MATH 365, and MATH 440, as well as some work in Computer Science, including the study of data structures.
  • Pure Mathematics (recommended for those who plan to do graduate study): MATH 315MATH 330MATH 341MATH 350MATH 400MATH 425 and MATH 440.
  • Scientific Computing: MATH 280 and PHYS 280; Computer Science courses in programming languages, data structures, parallel and vector processing, computer graphics, computer simulation and software design.
  • Teaching (secondary): Students interested in pursuing teacher education in Mathematics should consult with the liaison to teacher education early in their academic careers to ascertain the current requirements for certification. Be aware that specific content requirements vary from year to year and by graduate school. Courses often required are MATH 205MATH 210MATH 220MATH 280MATH 320MATH 325MATH 330MATH 345, and MATH 350. Courses in computer science also are often required.

Students in cooperative programs who want to major in Mathematics must complete a minimum of 39 credit hours of coursework numbered above Mathematics 160 and meet all the requirements for a major, as described above, except for MATH 620. At least 28 of the 39 semester hours required must be taken at Allegheny. Students in cooperative engineering programs are required to take MATH 280. Students in cooperative programs who want to minor in Mathematics must meet the requirements for a minor listed below.

Each Mathematics major, whether concentrating in applied mathematics or not, should be familiar with applications of mathematics to at least one other field. For this reason, the Department of Mathematics strongly recommends that majors pursue a sequence of three or more courses in at least one of the following departments: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, Geology, or Physics.

Mathematics majors are required to have a GPA of at least 2.0 in Mathematics at graduation. All Mathematics courses taken at Allegheny having a number higher than 159 must be taken on a letter-grade basis and are included in the calculation. In the case of repeated courses, only the most recent grade is included.

Normally, the Department of Mathematics will only award the honor citation in Mathematics to students who have completed at least four courses in Mathematics numbered between MATH 250 and MATH 500 (including CMPSC 230); at least one course must be selected from among,MATH 400MATH 425, and MATH 440.

Academic Bulletin

Visit the Academic Bulletin for information on all majors, minors, and other programs at Allegheny college.

Visit the Allegheny College Academic Bulletin