Life After Calculus

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Level of Entry

When choosing courses after linear algebra and vector calculus, the first consideration should be to find a course at the appropriate level. As a general rule, MATH classes at the 3000 level assume a minimum of proof-writing ability and are good first courses for students who are still uncomfortable with writing proofs. MATH 3040 (Prove It!) is especially focused on improving those skills. Most 4000-level MATH classes assume a greater familiarity with proof writing. This is especially true of the honors courses in algebra and analysis. Never-the-less, students who have completed MATH 2230-2240 with an A– or better are often well prepared for any 4000-level MATH class.

While undergraduates do sometimes take graduate-level MATH courses, some words of caution are in order. First, graduate courses are appropriate as an extension of — not a substitute for — a robust undergraduate education in mathematics at the 4000 level. The core graduate courses (MATH 6110-6120, 6310-6320, 6510-6520) assume students have a broad preparation in undergraduate-level mathematics, including but not limited to courses equivalent to our honors courses in algebra and analysis.  More advanced graduate courses often have additional graduate-level prerequisites. No graduate course should be viewed as a substitute for its undergraduate counterpart, and MATH 2230-2240 alone is entirely inadequate preparation for graduate study in mathematics. Undergraduates who are interested in taking a graduate course in mathematics should first consult with their advisor and the course instructor.