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Mathematics at Oxford - Course Outline

First Year

Courses

Compulsory first year comprises following subjects:

  • Mechanics
  • Algebra
  • Analysis
  • Geometry
  • Statistics
  • Probability and
  • Mathematical Methods and Applications

Assessment

First University exams (moderations) Four compulsory papers (two applied, two pure)

Second Year

Courses

  • Compulsory core of Algebra, Differential equations and Complex analysis
  • Selection from topics comprising Number theory, Algebra; Topology, Analysis, Physical applied mathematics, Geometry, Numerical methods, Probability and statistics, Electromagnetism

Assessment

Final University exams, Part A Two cross-sectional papers on the chosen topics Two papers on the compulsory core subjects

Third and Fourth Year

Courses

Large variety that may vary from year to year, ranging across: Analysis, Algebra, Geometry, Applied Analysis, Logic, Topology, Applied Probability, Number Theory, Theoretical Mechanics, Statistics, Mathematical Biology, Mathematical Physics, Mathematical Finance, Information Theory, Undergraduate Ambassadors Scheme, Actuarial Mathematics, Mathematical philosophy, Dissertation, History of Mathematics and Computer Science options.

Assessment

Final University exams Four papers or any equivalent in third year Three papers or any academic equivalent in fourth year, to comprise at least one dissertation/project

The Course

There are two Mathematics degrees, a three-year BA and a four-year MMath. Students do not need to decide when they apply and they will not be asked until their third year to choose between the degrees. The first year includes core courses in applied and pure mathematics (consisting of an introduction to statistics). The major part of the degree is covered in the first term of the second year introducing complex ideas and analysis from number theory and topology. The remaining part of the second year offers a wide spectrum of options approximately half of 13 courses are taken with the third and fourth years. These courses offer a broader variety of courses with various options from outside mathematics.

Normally, the fourth year is more challenging when various courses offered shall be shared with students reading for graduate degrees or need study through guided reading. Mathematics is part of the Physical, Mathematical and Life Sciences Division, which also includes Computer Science, Chemistry, Engineering, Earth Sciences, Physics, Materials, Plant Sciences, Statistics and Zoology. Students may take options in the other subject areas at the subsequent stages of the degree.

A Weekly Timetable

In the first two years, students shall attend approximately ten lectures a week with two or three tutorials and classes within their college. In the third and fourth year, students may specialize where they have fewer lectures combined with classes. In the first year, students have classes to enhance their computing skills using mathematical packages to solve problems associated to their studies. Consequently, there is practical work with options in statistics and numerical analysis.

Entrance Requirements

  • A-levels: AAA
  • Advanced Highers: AA/AAB
  • IB: 39 points, comprising core points
  • Or any other equivalent

Candidates are expected to have Mathematics to A-level, Higher Level or Advanced Higher in the IB or any academic equivalent. Further Mathematics is also strongly recommended. The majority of those students who read Mathematics will have taken both Further Mathematics and Mathematics at A-level or any equivalent; however, it is not essential. Students should be interested in the subject. The courses at Oxford have limited formal prerequisites. If students gain a place under these circumstances, their college shall usually recommend appropriate extra preparatory reading for the summer before they start the course.


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