Program Information

Mathematics Major

Why get a math degree?

The study of mathematics is an excellent way to develop problem solving and logical reasoning skills that will be valuable in any future pursuit. A degree program in mathematics prepares students for a variety of careers in industry, government, and academia. 

It is an excellent choices for students interested in:

  • an advanced degree in mathematics or a related field such as operations research or statistics
  • finance
  • biomedical research
  • management science
  • many other high-tech industries
  • a pre-professional program for law school, medical school, or an MBA program

Since mathematics does not exist in a vacuum, our degree programs are designed to complement other programs at Niagara University. Students who combine a major or minor with another degree program have a distinct advantage over their peers in fields such as biology, chemistry, finance, economics, computer science, banking or insurance. We offer a number of curriculum options to match our student’s interests.

Comparing the B.A. and the B.S.

The department of mathematics offers bachelor of arts and bachelor of science programs in mathematics. The requirements for the B.A. and B.S. programs are similar, with the main difference being that the B.A. program is somewhat more flexible. This flexibility can make the B.A. program a good choice for students who also choose a minor or double major in another field. Students who begin in one program can, in consultation with their faculty advisor, easily switch to the other program.

The mathematics faculty are always willing to talk with students considering a mathematics major about the program that would be the best fit for them.

Course Requirements

The following courses are required of students in both the B.A. and B.S. programs:

  • MAT 111 (Calculus I)
  • MAT 112 (Calculus II)
  • MAT 221 (Calculus III)
  • MAT 227 (Foundations of Mathematics)
  • MAT 228 (Linear Algebra)
  • MAT 331 (Analysis I) or MAT 442 (Complex Analysis)
  • MAT 333 (Algebraic Structures)
  • MAT 499 (Mathematics Seminar) or completion of an Honors Thesis

The B.S. program additionally requires the following courses:

  • MAT 222 (Differential Equations)
  • MAT 335 (Probability and Statistics I)
  • A second-semester upper-level course, such as MAT 336 (Probability and Statistics II)

Students in both programs also complete a selection of additional courses chosen in consultation with their faculty advisor.

Detailed and definitive information about course requirements can be found on the B.A. in mathematics curriculum card [link] and the B.S. in mathematics curriculum card [link].

Senior Seminar

In their senior year, students complete the capstone course MAT 499 (Mathematics Seminar). 

*Note: Successful completion of an honors thesis also meets the senior seminar requirement. 

Honors Thesis

Honors students work with a faculty advisor to conduct in-depth inquiry into an area of interest, resulting in the completion of an honors thesis.

*Note: Successful completion of an honors thesis also meets the senior seminar requirement.

Internship/Research Opportunities

Mathematics majors are encouraged to take advantage of opportunities for internships and research experiences, both within mathematics and in other areas that involve substantial mathematics.

For specific opportunities, visit the Internships and Research Opportunities page.

Students are encouraged to talk with the mathematics faculty about internship and research opportunities that would complement their program well. 

Mathematics Minor

Purpose

  • To encourage students to gain a deeper understanding of the field of mathematics.
  • To train students to become flexible problem solvers.
  • To gain a better understanding of the scope of mathematics.
  • To better prepare our students to do research in their field.
  • To equip students for graduate school and the job market.

Goals

Students that complete the mathematics minor should be:

  • Proficient in all Calculus I and II skills.
  • Be familiar with the tools of mathematics and have a firm grip on the core material.
  • Able to effectively communicate mathematics in written and oral form.
  • Familiar with both proofs and applications of mathematics.

Program

The mathematics minor consists of six units: two introductory courses (111 and 112) and four courses to be chosen from 221, 222, 227, 228, or 300-400 level. At least one course must be at a 300-400 level. For several departments, two or more of these courses are already required courses.

A. Introductory Mathematics Sequence (2 units)

All minors must take the following two courses:

  • MAT 111 Calculus I
  • MAT 112 Calculus II

B. Applied Advanced Statistics Course (4 units)

Students are required to take four more courses to complete the minor. At least one of these courses must be at the 300-400 level. The courses students may choose from to meet this requirement are listed below. Students should ask their advisors or a mathematics professor which courses would most beneficially complement their major.

  • MAT 221 Calculus III
  • MAT 222 Differential Equations
  • MAT 227 Foundations of Mathematics
  • MAT 228 Linear Algebra
  • MAT 300-400 level

Statistics Minor

Purpose

  • To encourage students to gain a deeper understanding of the field of statistics than can be gained from just one or two introductory courses.
  • To better prepare our students to do research in their field.
  • To equip our students for graduate school and the job market.

Goals

Students that complete the statistics minor should be able to:

  • Pick the appropriate test to use for a wide range of situations and draw conclusions from statistical tests.
  • Communicate their results both orally and in written form.
  • Be proficient at using a statistical package such as SPSS.

Program

The statistics minor consists of six units: two introductory courses, a core course, an elective, a research methods course and an internship. For several departments, two or more of these courses are already required courses.

A. Introductory Statistics Sequence (2 units)

Select one of the following groups of courses:

  • MAT 102/MAT 202
  • MAT 201/BUS 231
  • MAT 335/MAT 336*
  • MAT 102/PSY 221

*Note: MAT 335/336 requires MAT 111/112

B. Applied Advanced Statistics Course (2 units)

  • STA 301 Linear Models
  • STA 305 Nonparametric Data Analysis

C. Research Methods Course (1 unit)

Select one of the following courses:

  • POL 390
  • CMS 330
  • CRJ 300
  • PSY 222
  • MKG 311
  • BIO 499
  • GIS 100

*Or other research methods courses with permission of the supervisor of the statistics minor.

D. Internship (1 unit)

STA 499

* With permission of the supervisor of the statistics minor, this course may be substituted with a 300-400 level course in the student’s major, provided the student will be completing a project or thesis that contains statistical research.  This project can be a requirement for the course or it can be an extra project. The project/thesis should be presented publicly, and a member of the STA faculty should be informed of the presentation.

Examples of Internships:

  • Placement Protocol Kate Danzinger Spring 2014
  • Experiences related to Study Abroad Paige Houston Fall 2013
  • Who uses the Writing Center Nicole Pusateri Fall 2013
  • Citi-Group and the Financial Sector Steve Boyle Fall 2013
  • Retention at NU by Cameron Fitch Fall 2012
  • Study Abroad Experiences by Kelsey Atwater. Fall 2012
  • Health and Humor by Andrew Murphy Spring 2011
  • Analysis of the NSSE data by Desmond Betteto Fall 2010
  • Undergraduates’ views of the poor by Rebecca Reese Fall 2010
  • Retention at NU by Brittany McMahon Spring 2010