M.S. in Mathematics - Course Offerings

The M.S. in mathematics requires completion of 30 credits. These include a 12 credit core and six electives totaling 18 credits including a final capstone project. In consultation with a faculty advisor, each student designs an individualized program of study meeting his or her needs.

The Core

MA 435: Linear Algebra and MA 471: Real Analysis

Two additional courses specifically designated as proof-intensive courses (marked with an ‘*’ in the list below).

Students who have seen most of the material in MA 435 or MA 471 at a comparable depth may with permission substitute additional proof-intensive courses for one or both.

Elective Courses

The examples that follow illustrate three possible areas in which students might specialize within the M.S. program. In each case, students complete the required courses noted above, in addition to electives such as those listed below. These are suggestions only - a student needs not restrict himself or herself to those courses in a specific category.

For Teachers and Prospective Teachers

  • 583: Geometry
  • 585: Topology
  • 510: Foundations and Set Theory
  • 565: Use of Technology in the Classroom
  • 537: Number Theory
  • 417: Applied Statistics

For Business-Oriented Professionals

  • 417: Applied Statistics
  • 451: Probability
  • 452: Statistics
  • 531: Ordinary Differential Equations
  • 532: Partial Differential Equations
  • 577: Numerical Analysis
  • 550: Classical Financial Mathematics
  • 578: Mathematics of Financial Derivatives

For Those Interested in Pure Mathematics

  • 436: Abstract Algebra
  • 472: Complex Analysis
  • 583: Geometry
  • 585: Topology
  • 535: Advanced Abstract Algebra
  • 577: Numerical Analysis
  • 510: Foundations and Set Theory
  • 537: Number Theory

If a student is interested in mathematics not found in any of these courses, they may work with a faculty member to design an independent study in which they learn this material with the guidance of the professor. Students enroll in MA 599: Independent Study, which they may do up to two times for credit towards their MS degree. Independent studies must be approved.

The Capstone

Each student should complete, generally in his/her final semesters, a capstone consisting of a project or an oral or written exposition of mathematics, in consultation with a faculty advisor. Capstones are generally associated with a course the student is taking, though it may be associated with an independent study. The faculty advisor may or may not be the instructor of the associated course, and each student, with the help of his/her advisor, should develop a proposal in advance for his/her capstone, which is pass/fail.

Certificate in Financial Mathematics

The University also offers a four-course Certificate in Financial Mathematics for those who wish to improve their knowledge of financial markets or to understand the mathematics behind the computer models in the field of finance. The program is designed for mathematically trained professionals and those with a background in finance. Participants acquire additional quantitative and qualitative skills important to advancing careers in investment banking, hedge funds, and financial markets. The four courses are:

  • 550: Classical Financial Mathematics
  • 531: Ordinary Differential Equations
  • 532: Partial Differential Equations
  • 578: Mathematics of Financial Derivatives

The four courses (12 credits) may be applied at a later date to the requirements for a M. S. degree in mathematics at Fairfield University.

Course Listing (*proof-intensive course)

  • MA 417: Applied Statistics
  • MA 435: Linear Algebra
  • MA 436: Abstract Algebra *
  • MA 451: Probability
  • MA 452: Statistics *
  • MA 471: Real Analysis
  • MA 472: Complex Analysis *
  • MA 495: Special Topics in Mathematics
  • MA 510: Foundations and Set Theory
  • MA 531: Ordinary Differential Equations
  • MA 532: Partial Differential Equations
  • MA 535: Advanced Abstract Algebra *
  • MA 537: Number Theory *
  • MA 550: Classical Financial Mathematics
  • MA 555: Statistical Consulting
  • MA 565: Use of Technology in the Classroom
  • MA 577: Numerical Analysis
  • MA 578: Mathematics of Financial Derivatives
  • MA 583: Geometry *
  • MA 585: Topology *
  • MA 590: Capstone (View capstone form)
  • MA 599: Independent Study (View independent study application form)

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