The Department houses three Divisions: Mathematics and Applications, Mathematics Education, and Statistics. Undergraduate programs supported by each Division are presented below in turn.
Mathematics and Applications
The Mathematics and Statistics Department has 13 faculty members in Mathematics and Applications. Research specialties of the faculty include linear algebra and matrix theory, graph theory, differential equations, mathematical modeling, coding theory, signal processing and dynamical systems, among others.
There are several options for undergraduate degrees available to students. In addition to a BA in mathematics, students may obtain a BS with emphasis in financial mathematics, in science, in computational science, or in applied mathematics. Graduate master’s degrees are offered in mathematics, applied mathematics, and the mathematics of communications.
Mathematics is the language and instrument for the sciences and technology. It is concerned with a wide range of diverse problems from developing techniques to model real world applications and designing efficient methods for calculating their solutions, to creating new branches of mathematics and theories for as yet, unsolved problems. There are many reasons students choose to major in mathematics. Some are attracted to its countless applications while others find mathematics stimulating for the beauty of its intrinsic order, structure and form. Consider the problem of a space probe visiting a distant planet and sending (with distortion), information across millions of miles of space. The problem of reconstructing the image requires the use of sophisticated mathematical and statistical tools. Similar tools are and have been used to break military communication codes or even allow scratched music CDs to play as if they were undamaged. Mathematical principles and their applications form an important part of our lives in ways many of us never realize.
Because of its broad scope, degrees in mathematics prepare students for many different careers and the Department of Mathematics offers a variety of such degrees and emphases to provide students with several blends and specialties according to their interests and goals. Graduates with a mathematics major have many options for either careers in applications, for further study in graduate school or for teaching.
Candidates for a degree in mathematics must complete the graduation requirements listed in the section of the general catalog on “Graduation Requirements.” All university graduation requirements that apply are listed in the general catalog the year the students is admitted to the university. Specific requirements to obtain a degree in mathematics are those listed in the general catalog the year a student declares a math major.
The Mathematics Education Division has five faculty members. Research specialties of the faculty include research on teaching and learning (at both the K-12 level and the undergraduate level), use of technology, and professional development for practicing teachers. All of the faculty are members of the Center for Research in Mathematics and Science Education (CRMSE), which offers regular colloquia and research seminars.
At the undergraduate level, students wishing to teach secondary school mathematics should pursue the BA degree in Mathematics in preparation for the Single Subject Teaching Credential. In order to become certified to teach in public schools in California, graduates with this major are required to enroll in a fifth-year credential program in mathematics.
The Mathematics and Statistics Department has 7 faculty members in Statistics and Biostatistics. Research specialties of the faculty include biostatistics, clinical trials, environmental statistics, statistical computing, statistical education, Bayesian statistics, and spatial statistics. The division is active in the American Statistical Association San Diego Chapter and holds weekly seminars in statistics. The American Statistical Association (ASA) is a scientific and educational society to promote excellence in the application of statistical science.
The Division runs the SDSU Statistical Consulting Center which provides advice, data management, and statistical analyses to the university community and to the private sector. The Center is staffed by two co-directors who are PhD level faculty and by Master’s level graduate students in the statistics and biostatistics programs at SDSU.
There are two options for undergraduate degrees available to students. In addition to a BS in Statistics, students may obtain a BS in Statistics emphasis in Actuarial Science. Graduate master’s degrees are offered in statistics and statistics with a concentration in biostatistics.