Undergraduate Major in
Applied + Computational Mathematics
Undergraduate Option Rep
Prof. Peter Schroeder
The undergraduate option in applied and computational mathematics (ACM) within the Computing & Mathematical Sciences department seeks to address the interests of those students who want to combine their basic studies in mathematics with considerable involvement in applications. This program is designed to give students a thorough training in fundamental computational and applied mathematics and to develop their research ability in a specific application field. The fields of application include a wide range of areas such as fluid mechanics, materials science, and mathematical biology, engineering applications, image processing, and mathematical finance. The training essential for future careers in applied mathematics in academia, national laboratories, or in industry is provided, especially when combined with graduate work, by successful completion of the requirements for an undergraduate degree in applied and computational mathematics. Complete programs are worked out with faculty advisers.
Students can simultaneously pursue a degree in a second option, but for graduation with an ACM major, students must fulfill all the requirements of the ACM option. Courses may be used simultaneously to fulfill requirements in both options. To enroll in the program, the student should meet and discuss his/her plans with the option representative. In general, approval is contingent on good academic performance by the student and demonstrated ability for handling the heavier course load.
- The ACM Option requires the analytical tracks of Ma 1 b and Ma 1 c.
- Ma 2, Ma 3, Ma 6 abc, Ph 2 abc, ACM 11, CS 1, E 10, ACM 95 ab, Ma 108 abc, CMS/ACM 104, ACM 101 ab, ACM 106 ab.
- Three courses numbered 100+ in ACM approved by the advisor and option representative.
- One 27-unit 100+ sequence in science, engineering, or social sciences approved by the option representative.
- Passing grades must be obtained in a total of 486 units, including the courses listed above. Courses satisfying option requirements must be taken for grades (except when courses are only available P/F) and passed with a grad of C- or higher.
Typical Course Schedule
|Units Per Term|
|Ma 2||Differential Equations||9||-||-|
|Ma 2||Intro. Probability and Statistics||-||9||-|
|Ma 6 abc||Introduction to Discrete Mathematics||9||9||9|
|Ph 2 abc||Sophomore Physics||9||9||9|
|ACM 11||Intro. to Matlab and Mathematica||-||-||6|
|CS 1||Intro. to Computer Programming||9||-||-|
|Math 108abc||Classical Analysis||9||9||9|
|ACM 95ab||Intro. Methods of Applied Math.||12||12|
|CMS/ACM 104||Linear Algebra and Applied Operator Theory||12||-||-|
|ACM 101ab||Methods of Applied Mathematics||12||12||-|
|ACM 106ab||Intro. Methods of Comput. Math||-||12||12|
|CMS/ACM/EE 116||Intro to Stoch. Proc. and Modeling||9||-||-|
|ACM 216||Markov Chains, Discrete Stoch. Proc. and Appl.||-||9||-|
|CMS/ACM 113||Mathematical Optimization||9||-||-|
Because of large enrollments, students won't usually be able to have an advisor from the CMS faculty during their freshman year. Students seeking an ACM advisor should contact the undergraduate option secretary at academicscms.caltech.edu.
There are many opportunities for undergraduate research in the computer science field. Students may work with faculty in the Computing + Mathematical Sciences Department and in other departments and JPL. There are a wide variety of research opportunities in computing across campus, ranging from applied physics research to numerical relativity.
Campus-wide, there is a SURF (Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships) program you may want to apply for. Please visit the SURF website for more information. The application deadline is typically in February. Students should begin talking with professors at least two months before the deadline.