Mathematics or Applied Mathematics?

The Graduate Program in Mathematics in the Mathematics Department and the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Applied Mathematics are two separate units with distinct degrees and different courses of study. The following guidelines should help you decide which of these two programs is most suitable for you:

The Graduate Program in Mathematics offers core courses in algebra, analysis, and topology-geometry. In addition to studying a broad range of topics in mathematics, students in this program tend to pursue research topics in more theoretical aspects of mathematics, and nearly always write their dissertation under the supervision of a professor in the Mathematics department.

The Interdisciplinary Program in Applied Mathematics offers core courses in numerical analysis, applied analysis, and mathematical methods. Students in this program study the applications of mathematics, with a strong emphasis on interdisciplinary research at the interface of mathematics and the physical, life and engineering sciences. It is common for students in this program to have advisors from other departments.

Although the two graduate programs are separate, a special feature of the University of Arizona is that they work closely together. Students from both graduate programs share offices, help teach the same courses, and often take advanced level mathematics courses together. Furthermore there are no hard divisions between the types of research projects that they can pursue: sometimes students in the Mathematics program will work on applications oriented problems, and students in the Applied program will work on more theoretical problems. Although the choice of program is usually clear, we would be happy to advise as to which one best matches your interests.

Click here for more information on the Graduate Program in Mathematics.