Undergraduate Major in
Applied + Computational Mathematics
Undergraduate Option Rep
Prof.
Peter Schroeder
pscaltech.edu
Undergraduate Option Manager
Carmen NemerSirois
carmenscms.caltech.edu
Applied and Computational Mathematics Option
The undergraduate option in applied and computational mathematics 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 will be worked out with faculty
advisers.
Option Requirements
 Mathematical Fundamentals: Ma 2; Ma 3; Ma 6 ab or Ma 121 ab; Ma 6c or CS 21; Ma 108 ab. Taking the analytical tracks of Ma 1 bc is strongly encouraged.
 Programming Fundamentals: CS 1 or CS 1X; and basic numerical algorithms: ACM 11.
 Communication Fundamentals: SEC 10; one of SEC 1113.

Core Classes:
 Introductory Methods: ACM 95ab.
 Linear Algebra: ACM 104 or ACM 107.
 Probability: ACM 116 or CMS 117.
 Mathematical Methods: ACM 101 ab.
 Numerical Analysis: ACM 106 ab.
 ACM Electives: In addition to all of the above requirements, three 100+ ACM courses approved by the advisor; up to 9 units of ACM 80 abc or ACM 81 abc can be counted towards this requirement with advisor approval.
 Sequence: In addition to all of the above requirements, one 27unit 100+ sequence in science engineering, or social sciences approved by the option representative.
 Scientific Fundamentals: In addition to all of the above requirements, 18 units selected from Bi 8, Bi 9, Ch 21abc, Ch 25, Ch 41 abc, ME 11 abc, ME 12 abc, Ph 2 abc, or Ph 12 abc.
 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 grade of C‐ or higher.
Double Majoring
Students interested in simultaneously pursuing a degree in a second option must fulfill all the requirements of the ACM option. Classes cannot be counted towards both options unless specifically required by both. 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.
Advising
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.
Study Abroad Requirements
Students interested in studying abroad must fulfill the 'Core Classes' requirement via enrollment in courses at Caltech, i.e., these courses cannot be substituted by courses taken abroad. Substitutions of equivalent courses are allowed for other requirements at the approval of the Option Administrator.
Research
There are many opportunities for undergraduate research in the applied and computational mathematics 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.
Campuswide, 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.
Typical Course Schedule
Units Per Term  
Second Year  1st  2nd  3rd  

Ma 2  Differential Equations  9     
Ma 3  Introduction to Probability and Statistics    9   
Ma 6 ab alt.
Ma 121 ab + Ma 6 c alt. CS 21 (0/9/18) 
Introduction to Discrete Mathematics  9  9  9 
Science Requirement  See requirements listed above  9  9   
ACM 11  Introduction to Matlab and Mathematics      6 
CS 1  Introduction to Computer Programming  9     
HSS Electives  9  9  9  
Electives (see option requirements 5, 6 above)    9  18  
45  45  42  
Third Year  1st  2nd  3rd  
Ma 108 ab  Classical Analysis  9  9   
ACM 95 ab  Introduction to Methods of Applied Math    12  12 
ACM/IDS 104 (or 107)  Appl. Linear Algebra  9     
ACM/EE/IDS 116 (or 107)  Introduction To Probability Models  9     
HSS electives  9  9  9  
Electives (see option requirements 5, 6 above)    3    
SEC 10  Technical Seminar Presentation    3   
One of SEC 1113  Written Tech. Comm. in Engineering and Applied Science      3 
45  45  36  
Fourth Year  1st  2nd  3rd  
ACM/IDS 101 ab  Methods of Applied Mathematics  12  12   
ACM/EE 106 ab  Intro. Methods of Computational Mathematics  12  12   
HSS Elective  9  9  9  
Electives  9  9  27  
42  42  36 