Nov 18, 2019  
2016-2017 Graduate Catalog 
2016-2017 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Mathematics & Statistics

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The Department offers work leading to the degree of Master of Arts in Mathematics. The program outlined below offers the student three “pathways” or tracks for advanced study in mathematics: pure, interdisciplinary, and statistics.  All paths provide both thesis and non-thesis options. At the time of admission, students will be assigned a preliminary advisor to assist them in developing a course of study consistent with their specific goals, and monitor their progress until they can formally establish their own advisory committee before the end of the first year.

Degree Requirements

I. Base Requirements: All three tracks require at least 30 credit hours, including one or two semesters of the Graduate Research Seminar, MAT 590. Credits must be distributed as follows:

A. Thesis Option: A minimum of 21 credit hours (of which 6 are thesis credits) must be at the graduate level. A program of study must be developed and approved by the student’s advisory committee. Upon completion of the course of study and the thesis, the student must present an oral defense of the thesis.
B. Non-thesis Option: A minimum of 24 credit hours must be at the graduate level. Qualifying examinations must be taken in the semester prior to graduation.  Decisions for retakes are up to the student’s committee.

II. Track Requirements: (All unspecified course work is chosen by the student in consultation with the advisory committee.)

A. Pure Mathematics - All students are required to take the three core classes MAT 523, MAT 527, MAT 563,plus at least two courses from STS 531, 562, 577, and 524, as 15 of the required credit hours.
B. Interdisciplinary Mathematics - All students are required to take the core classes MAT 523, MAT 527, and MAT 557 as 9 of the required credit hours. Up to 12 of the remaining required credit hours may be taken in one or more other disciplines.
C. Statistics - All students are required to take the core classes MAT 523, STS 531, and STS 532 as 9 of the required credit hours. In addition, students are required to take STS 533 and a course in Linear Statistical Models through a 3-credit special topics course or reading course.

III. Seminar Requirement: All graduate students must successfully give at least two seminars. It is suggested that one seminar be given in each of the fall and spring semesters of the second year. As this is a credit-bearing requirement, it is necessary to register. The assigned course number is MAT 590. For students following the thesis option, one credit of MAT 590 is required, and the thesis defense fulfills the second seminar requirement. For students in the non-thesis option, MAT 590 must be taken twice, once for each of the two seminars given. The talks should be prepared in consultation with and under the supervision of the advisor. Students should submit a short advisor-approved abstract to the graduate coordinator at least one week in advance of the seminar day, for inclusion in the announcement. The evaluation will be handled by the advisor in consultation with the members of the student’s advisory committee. A clear statement of the problem should be given with a brief historical sketch. All technical terms, specific to the area of expertise, should be clearly defined before they are used.

Admission to the Program

In addition to satisfactory performance of the candidate as an undergraduate, as evidenced by transcripts, letters of recommendation, and G.R.E. scores, the Department requires one semester of real analysis (equivalent to MAT 425) and one semester of abstract algebra (equivalent to MAT 463). Occasionally, students can be admitted with a deficiency in one of these areas if the deficiency is made up in the first year of graduate study. Prospective students are encouraged to follow the application procedure here:

Four Plus BA/MA Program

The Department offers the opportunity for ambitious mathematics majors to begin taking graduate courses during their senior year, with the possibility of double-counting these credits toward the BA and the MA. Students must apply for the program by February 1 of their junior year.  Details may be found here:


Teaching Assistantships

A limited number of graduate teaching assistantships are available. Teaching assistants are expected to spend approximately 17 hours per week either teaching a course or assisting a faculty member and working in the Math Lab, an open tutorial center. Assistantships are awarded on a competitive basis among all applicants, and the decision to renew an assistantship is based on performance in the first year of the student’s program of study.

Courses Allowable for Graduate Credit

If the thesis option is chosen, three 400-level courses may be given graduate credit at the discretion of the advisory committee. If the non-thesis option is chosen, only two such courses may be used. Graduate credit will not be given for any course below 400. Normally, any MAT 400 level course listed in the course description section can be taken for graduate credit with the following exceptions: MAT 445, 425, 463.

Graduate Faculty


Eisso Atzema, Ph.D. (Utrecht University, Netherlands, 1993), Lecturer. History of mathematics, geometry, mathematics education.

Thomas Bellsky, Ph.D. (Michigan State University, 2011), Assistant Professor.  Dynamical systems, Data Assimilation, Weather and Climate Modeling.

David M. Bradley, Ph.D. (University of Illinois, Urbana 1995), Associate Professor and Chair. Classical analysis, number theory, special functions, difference differential equations.

Robert Franzosa, Ph.D. (University of Wisconsin, 1984), Professor. Applied topology.

Pushpa L. Gupta, Ph.D. (Wayne State University, 1970), Professor. Statistics, biostatistics, reliability theory, multivariate analysis and modeling.

Ramesh C. Gupta, Ph.D. (Wayne State University, 1970), Professor.Statistics, biostatistics, probability, stochastic processes, reliability theory, mathematical models.

William Halteman, Ph.D. (University of Washington, 1980), Professor Emeritus. Biostatistics.

David Hiebeler, Ph.D. (Cornell University, 2001), Associate Professor. Mathematical ecology and epidemiology, modeling and simulation.

Andre Khalil, Ph.D. (Université Laval, 2004). Associate Professor. Image analysis of computational modeling.

Andrew Knightly, Ph.D. (University of California, Los Angeles, 2000), Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator. Number theory.

Randy Lai, Ph.D. (University of California, Davis, 2015), Assistant Professor.  Statistics.

Sergey Lvin, Ph.D. (University of Moscow, Russia, 1977), Lecturer.  Partial differential equations, applied mathematics.

Nigel Pitt
, Ph.D. (Rutgers University, 1992), Professor. Analytic number theory.

William M. Snyder, Ph.D. (University of Maryland, 1977), Professor Emeritus. Number theory.

Natasha Speer, Ph.D. (University of California, Berkeley, 2001), Associate Professor. Mathematics Education.

Benjamin Weiss, Ph.D. (University of Michigan, 2011), Assistant Professor. Number Theory.



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