Fairfield University’s Master of Science in Mathematics teaches you the necessary theoretical skills to learn advanced mathematics as well as the quantitative methods needed to apply these results to real world problems. You’ll work with a supportive faculty of mathematicians dedicated to helping you reach your full potential. Whether you’re an aspiring teacher or business leader, pursuing a PhD in mathematics or other technical fields, or just wanting to challenge yourself, our program will provide you with the foundation to reach your goals.
Join us for an upcoming Graduate Information Session where we can answer your questions one-on-one, give you an opportunity to meet our faculty and introduce you to the Fairfield University community and experience.
Because of its beauty, precision, and usefulness, mathematics has always attracted not only the most profound and theoretical minds, but also pragmatic thinkers who are eager to apply its insights to the problems of the world around us.
Fairfield University's Master's Degree Program in Mathematics is designed for students who have a strong undergraduate background in mathematics or a related field. Our program caters to students in many different situations, including, but not limited to, middle- and secondary-school teachers, those seeking to teach in two-year colleges, business professionals whose work is quantitative in nature, students desiring solid preparation for entrance into a doctoral program, and those who are simply attracted by the beauty of mathematics.
Full-time Fairfield University faculty members teach in the Master's Program, bringing a wealth of expertise to the classroom. The breadth of their specialties, together with their commitment to excellence in teaching and making a difference in individual students’ lives, enriches the program and the options available to students. This benefit translates into an ability to allow our students to design individualized programs of study, in consultation with a faculty advisor, related to their background, interest, and personal goals.
The curriculum features a common core of 12 credits, supplemented by a series of electives that make specialization possible. Because our program caters to working adults, classes mostly meet one evening a week during the fall and spring semesters and are available in the summer, as well.
As director of the graduate program in mathematics, I invite you to peruse the course descriptions and faculty credentials that follow and join us in a more focused study within the field I so enjoy.
Stephen F. Sawin, Ph.D.
Director of the M.S. in Mathematics
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.
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.
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
For Business-Oriented Professionals
For Those Interested in Pure Mathematics
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.
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.
Course Listing (*proof-intensive course)
Fairfield University also offers a four-course Certificate in Financial Mathematics, as well as a four-course Certificate in Applied Statistics. Each program is designed with the busy professional in mind and combines individual attention, a deeply committed faculty, and a focus on the whole person to meet you where you are and give you the skills you need to achieve your professional goals.
The M.S. in Mathematics program welcomes students of ability with a strong undergraduate background in mathematics or a related field such as computer science, engineering, physics, finance, economics, or certain social sciences. Students who hold a bachelor's degree in any field from a regionally accredited college or university (or the international equivalent) are encouraged to apply.
Applications are reviewed by the Graduate Admission Committee. Students seeking admission must submit:
Students from non-English speaking countries are required to submit a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score report. A TOEFL composite score of 550 for the paper test, 213 for the computer-based, or 79-80 on the Internet-based test (IBT) is strongly recommended for admission. Fairfield's ETS code is 3390.
All application materials should be sent to:
Office of Graduate and Continuing Studies Admission
1073 North Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824-5195
Phone: (203) 254-4184
Fax: (203) 254-4073
How to Apply
For detailed admission requirements, please refer to the links below:
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.
To be considered for financial aid, Fairfield University requires students to complete a FAFSA form. For further information, visit the Office of Financial Aid.
The College of Arts and Sciences at Fairfield University is home to a vibrant community of engaged faculty, dedicated staff and passionate scholars devoted to the process of invention and discovery and excited by the prospect of producing knowledge in the service of others.
The College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) has created an accelerated pathway for current, high achieving undergraduate students who are interested in transitioning directly into one of our Master's programs.
For more information, contact:
Jonathan Gryak MS'09
Title: Infrastructure Manager
Employer: Westport Public Schools
PhD student in Computer Science, CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY
I am currently the Infrastructure Manager for the Westport Public Schools, overseeing the district’s IT infrastructure, including: voice, data, and video networks; email; server hardware and software; as well as building automation and environmental monitoring.
I am also a PhD candidate in Computer Science at the CUNY Graduate Center, performing research in the fields of non-commutative cryptography and computational group theory.
Why did you choose to attend the math graduate program at Fairfield University?
I was looking to advance my studies in mathematics, in part for my own edification, but also to help me determine if I wished to pursue a PhD. Fairfield offered a program that allowed me to pursue my interests, and with evening classes made it possible to fit into my work schedule.
What are/were the best academic aspects of the program?
I greatly appreciated the flexibility the program afforded me to study the subject areas in mathematics that I was interested in.
Describe a project or problem in your work or life where you used what you learned in the math graduate program.
The group theory and other algebra learned in the required courses have assisted me in my current research in non-commutative cryptography. Moreover, I was introduced to the field during my capstone project, under the direction of Prof. Fine, who continues to be an active researcher in the field.
What attributes regarding the faculty did you find particularly helpful and encouraging?
When courses weren’t available in subjects I was interested in, a number of faculty members agreed to mentor me in independent studies. They challenged me with non-trivial problems and provided guidance throughout the course.
What were some of the challenges in going back to school as an adult student?
The primary challenge was working and studying concurrently, but the evening courses and the flexibility to choose the number of courses per semester helped mitigated this issue.
Describe an anecdote or experience with a particular professor that you found helpful or meaningful.
Knowing my potential interest in academia, Professor Fine invited me to a weekend conference on group theory held at Fairfield, where I was introduced to many mathematicians working in the field. I was struck by how collaborative mathematics can be, and by the depth and warmness of the long-term personal relationships that such collaboration engenders. It was such a contrast to how the work of academics in general and mathematicians in particular is perceived, and enabled me to envision myself pursuing a PhD and making a life for myself in academia.
Fairfield University's M.S. in Mathematics graduates have gone on to diverse professional fields, including:
Recent employers/institutions include:
When are applications due?
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Applications are reviewed by the Graduate Admission Committee.
What are the application requirements?
Do I need to take the GREs?
The GREs are not required. We do look closely at your academic record and other application materials. Generally, we like to see that you have at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA. If your GPA is lower than 3.0 but you would like us to consider your application, you may include with your application a statement that explains your GPA and why you are confident you will be able to maintain the required 3.0 GPA in your graduate studies.
How much does it cost?
Tuition and fees for Fairfield's graduate programs
Do I have to be a full-time student?
Our programs are designed to accommodate students who want to attend part-time because most of our students are working at least part time. Some of our students attend full time, however.
When are courses offered?
Courses are offered during 4 semesters per year: fall, spring, summer 1 and summer 2. During the fall and spring semesters, most courses are offered in the evenings from 6:30-9 p.m. once a week.
What is the average class size?
Our classes are small, with 10-15 students per class.
Do I need to have earned an undergraduate degree in mathematics to be eligible for admission?
No, but you need a significant number of undergraduate credits in mathematics including at least a year of calculus.
How long does it take to complete the degree?
The program can be completed in two academic years.
What financial aid is available?
To be considered for financial aid, Fairfield University requires students to complete a FAFSA form. For further information on financial aid, visit the Office of Financial Aid.
Are graduate assistantships available?
A limited number of part- and full-time University assistantships are available to assist promising and deserving students.
Whom do I call if I have questions?
For more information about Fairfield University's graduate programs, please contact:
Office of Graduate Admission
1073 North Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824
Call (203) 254-4184 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.