Graduate Mathematics Program Requirements

Doctor of Philosophy  |  Master of Science  |  Master of Arts  |  International

The Mathematics Department offers graduate degree programs leading to the Doctor of Philosophy, Master of Science, and Master of Arts degrees in mathematics.

Doctor of Philosophy

See the timeline for detailed information about our program.

In addition to the general requirements for a Ph.D. mandated by the Graduate School (as for example: maintaining a GPA of at least 3.00). Every student is required to:

  1. Earn a minimum of 36 credits must be earned in mathematics courses numbering 700 and above.
  2. Take the four core year-long 700-level courses: algebra (MTH 761/762), algebraic topology (MTH 731/732), real analysis (MTH 733/734), and complex analysis (MTH 735/736) in the first 3 years. Students must have the required prerequisites to be able to attend any core course.
  3. Exams: Pass 3 qualifying exams by June of the third year. Of these three exams:
    1. One exam must be from either the core course real analysis MTH 733/734 or complex analysis MTH 735/736
    2. One exam must be from either the core course algebra MTH 761/762 or algebraic topology MTH 741/742
    3. The remaining exam can be from a core course or from the specialty chosen by the student. This specialty exam can cover topics from any year-long 700-level course or any two one-semester 700-level courses, subject to the approval of faculty in the specialty.
    No exam maybe taken more than twice.
  4. Obtain a dissertation advisor by June of the third year.
  5. Maintain a status of good standing (see timeline and good standing requirements section).
  6. Pass a proficiency exam in one of the languages French, German or Russian.
  7. Seminar Requirement:
    It is expected that all advanced graduate students regularly attend and participate in the department colloquia and/or seminars. The intention is for the student to gain experience digesting advanced material and to be part of the mathematical community.

Master of Science

Prerequisite: A minimum of 15 credits in mathematics courses numbered 200 and above is required.


  1. A total of 30, 33, or 36 credits in approved courses must be earned, depending on whether at least 15, 12-14, or 9-11 credits, respectively, are in mathematics courses numbered 700 and above. A minimum of 24 credits must be earned in mathematics courses. At least two of the basic sequences 631-632, 633-634 and 661-662 are required.
  2. M.S. exams

Master of Arts

The Master of Arts degree in mathematics is intended solely for teachers of secondary school mathematics.

Prerequisite: A minimum of 9 credits in mathematics courses numbered 200 and above is required.


  1. A total of 30 credits must be earned; at least 18 credits of which are in mathematics courses numbered 600 or above. These courses must include at least one of the following year-long sequences: 613-614, 615-616, 624-625, 631-632, 633-634, and 661-662. All courses from other departments must be numbered 700 or above, be pertinent to the teaching of secondary school mathematics, and be approved by the graduate committee.
  2. A three hour written examination covering the material in one of the year-long sequences listed above.

A Note to International Students

All international students whose native language is not English, including those applying for transfer from U.S. institutions, are required to submit the results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Applicants who submit a TOEFL score of at least 550 on the paper-based test (PBT), or 213 on the computer-based test (CBT), will not be required to take any courses in English as a second language.

A cumulative score of 59 on the Reading, Writing, and Listening sections of the Internet-based test (iBT) is also acceptable. Note that the Speaking section is not included in this score.