The question "What should I study at University?" is a difficult one
for most students. You may be fortunate enough to have developed a
passion and ability for mathematics, and are sure this is what you want
to study. On the other hand you may enjoy math and have a knack for it,
but not be convinced that pursuing an education in mathematics or
statistics is for you.

Most prospective students don't realize that there are a wide range of
options available when considering mathematics. There are degrees
offered through the faculties of Arts and Management, as well as
Science. There are a number of different programs offered in the three
faculties to suit almost any level of interest in mathematics or
statistics including minor programs, faculty programs, majors programs,
and honours programs. There are also joint majors and honours programs
available through the faculties of Arts and Science allowing you to
combine a degree in mathematics with a degree in computer science,
physics, or even philosophy to name a few.

If you are not sure which type of degree or program would best match
your interests you should look over the following general descriptions
and then look in more detail at which programs and options are
available through the different faculties.

## Choosing a Degree:

**Honours:** The ideal background for graduate study in
a mathematical discipline is provided by one of the honours programs.
These programs provide the rigorous training and the theoretical
foundations on which serious research can be based. The honours courses
are taught at a level appropriate to the most mathematically talented
and dedicated of our undergraduate students. Honours programs demand
that the student maintain a GPA above 3.0.

**Majors:** The majors programs provide a very solid
foundation in Mathematics. The major program does not cut you off from
the possibility of graduate study but does not provide the same ``fast
track'' that the honours program does. On the other hand, the majors
program lends itself to more flexibility in course selection allowing
the student to sample a wider variety of disciplines. The decision on
whether to go into a majors or honours program can be made after the
first semester at McGill, since honours and major students start off in
the same introductory courses.

**Liberal Science Programs:** The main function of the
Liberal Science programs is to provide opportunities for
interdisciplinary study within relatively light programs, which allow
for many outside electives. In these programs you take a Science Core
Concentration and the additional credits make up a breadth component.

**Minor Programs:** If you see mathematics more as a
secondary area in which you are interested, a minor program may be a
good choice. Minor programs allow you to develop a certain expertise in
mathematics without committing yourself too deeply. On successful
completion of the program, the minor program designation appears on
your degree and employers will recognize it is as an additional
qualification.

## Choosing a Faculty and Program:

The following faculties offer programs in Mathematics and the programs they offer are quite different. Students are accepted at McGill into a certain faculty, but it is sometimes possible to switch to a different faculty. Take stock of the different entrance requirements that each faculty imposes.

### Programs in the Faculty of Science:

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics offers a full range of
courses through the Faculty of Science.

**Honours in Mathematics**
(60 credits). Typically this program provides the necessary grounding
for graduate studies in Pure Mathematics.

**Honours in Applied
Mathematics** (68 credits). Typically this program provides the
necessary grounding for graduate studies in Applied Mathematics or
related fields. The program includes 12 credits of extra-mural courses
in a field related to Applied Mathematics.

**Honours in Probability
and Statistics** (64 credits). This program provides the most
rigorous training for those wishing to go on to do graduate studies in
Statistics. It is feasible to do graduate work in Statistics from a
Majors in Mathematics.

**Joint Honours in
Mathematics and Computer Science** (72 to 75 credits). This is a
joint program with the department of Computer Science. Graduating
students may go on to do graduate work or use their high level of
qualifications to find excellent jobs. This is a very demanding program.

**Joint Honours in
Statistics and Computer Science** (76 to 79 credits). This is a
joint program with the department of Computer Science. Graduating
students may go on to do graduate work or use their high level of
qualifications to find excellent jobs in either discipline.

**Joint Honours in
Mathematics and Physics** (81 credits). A specialized and
demanding program providing a strong basis in both Mathematics and
Physics and intended for those seeking to do graduate studies or enter
a professional or academic career.

**Major in Mathematics**
(54 credits). A general program in Mathematics with a solid basis. By
careful selection of the complementary courses the program can give
excellent training in specific areas of Mathematics, such as
Probability and Statistics, Applied Mathematics etc. Students in this
program take the same theoretical courses Basic Algebra (189-235) and
Real Analysis I (189-242) as do the Honours students. This allows the
student to get a feel for his/her mathematical ability and helps in the
final selection of a program. The low credit requirement leaves a lot
of room for electives or alternatively a minor program. With a 24
credit minor program you can still have 12 credits of electives.

**Joint Major in
Mathematics and Computer Science** (72 credits) A program
providing a solid training in both Mathematics and Computer Science.
Graduates will generally enter a professional career in a computer
related field.

**Joint Major in
Statistics and Computer Science** (72 credits) A program
providing a solid training in Mathematics, Statistics and Computer
Science. Graduates will generally enter a professional career in a
statistics or computer related field.

The above programs are available in an internship version.

**Joint Major in
Physiology and Mathematics** (71 credits). This program exposes
the student to mathematical modeling of physiological phenomena. This
rapidly developing area has been the subject of interest to a strong
group of the Faculty in the Department of Physiology.

**Joint Major in Biology
and Mathematics** (76 credits). This program is built on a
selection of mathematics and biology courses that recognizes
mathematical biology as a field of research, with 3 streams within
biology: Ecology and Evolutionary Ecology, Molecular Evolution, and
Neurosciences.

**Liberal Science Degree
combining the Core Science Component in mathematics with a breadth
component.** (45 credits of MATH plus breadth component)

**Liberal Science Degree
combining the Core Science Component in statistics with a breadth
component.** (45 credits of MATH plus breadth component)

**Minor in Mathematics**
(24 credits).

**Minor in Statistics**
(24 credits).

IYES is the acronym describing the internship programs. In these
programs the student participates in an internship of 8 to 16 months
duration, giving benefits to both student and employer. The employers
that offer internships are serious concerns. The Internships Office
goes to great lengths to vet the companies involved and make sure that
the internships they offer provide a genuine and useful training. The
internship must be taken when the student has at least 15 but no more
than 45 credits to complete towards his/her degree. The internship
carries no academic credit and there is no evaluation of the internship
affecting the degree obtained. IYES is not available in the Faculty of
Arts. See the Faculty of Engineering section of the calendar for
further details.

The internships are set up within a very short time frame. Some of the
internships will require the student to relocate during the period of
the internship and it is a good idea to think through the implications
of committing to an internship well in advance.

### Programs in the Faculty of Arts:

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics offers a wide range of
programs in the Faculty of Arts. For the most part, students do not
have to decide at the outset which program they intend to follow,
although it is certainly helpful to decide on some kind of plan.
Programs are designed to satisfy a wide variety of different needs.

The ideal background for graduate study in a mathematical discipline is
provided by one of the honours programs. These programs provide the
rigorous training and the theoretical foundations on which serious
research can be based. The honours courses are taught at a level
appropriate to the most mathematically talented and dedicated of our
undergraduate students. Honours programs demand that the student
maintain a GPA above a certain level.

Many honours programs in the Faculty of Arts leave enough elective
credits for the student to consider combining them into a minor. Minor
concentrations in the Faculty of Arts encompass 18 credits.

If you are in a "straight" honours program in the Faculty of Arts, and
are not taking a minor, then you have no safety net. If you fail to
make it in your program then there is most likely no Arts program you
can easily switch into. With honours plus a minor or joint honours, you
would normally bail out into option A or option B of the multi-track
system respectively if you found that you were unable to continue.

The Multitrack System is the system that allows students to obtain a
broadly based education in a variety of fields. The 90 credits in this
system can be obtained in one of the following three options.

**Option A:**One major concentration (36 credits) plus one minor concentration (18 credits) plus 36 credits of elective courses.

**Option B:**One major concentration (36 credits) plus one major concentration (36 credits) plus 18 credits of elective courses.

**Option C:**One major concentration (36 credits) plus two minor concentrations (18 credits each) plus 18 credits of elective courses.

See the Arts section of the calendar for details. There are
restrictions on taking more than one concentration from the same
department.

**Honours in Mathematics**
(60 credits). Typically this program provides the necessary grounding
for graduate studies in Pure Mathematics. Students in this program take
the same theoretical courses Basic Algebra (189-235) and Real Analysis
I (189-242) as do the Majors students. This allows the student to get a
feel for his/her mathematical ability and helps in the final selection
of a program.

**Honours in Applied
Mathematics** (68 credits). Typically this program provides the
necessary grounding for graduate studies in Applied Mathematics or
related fields. The program includes 12 credits of extra-mural courses
in a field related to Applied Mathematics.

**Honours in Probability
and Statistics** (64 credits). This program provides the most
rigorous training for those wishing to go on to do graduate studies in
Statistics. It is feasible to do graduate work in Statistics from a
Major Concentration in Mathematics plus a Minor Concentration in
Statistics.

**Joint Honours in
Mathematics and Computer Science** (72 to 75 credits). This is a
joint program with the department of Computer Science. Graduating
students may go on to do graduate work or use their high level of
qualifications to find excellent jobs. This is a very demanding
program.

**Joint Honours in
Statistics and Computer Science** (76 to 79 credits). This is a
joint program with the department of Computer Science. Graduating
students may go on to do graduate work or use their high level of
qualifications to find excellent jobs. This is a very demanding program.

**Joint Honours in
Mathematics and another Arts Discipline** (72 credits). The
Faculty of Arts supports a "mix and match" system for Joint Honours.
The student combines two 36 credit components from different
departments. Not all Arts departments participate in this scheme. The
program allows students to engage in unusual and interesting programs
at a high level. The most popular such programs involving Math are
Joint Honours in Economics and Mathematics and Joint Honours in English
and Mathematics.

**Major Concentration in
Mathematics** (36 credits). A general program in Mathematics
with a solid basis. By careful selection of the complementary courses
the program can give excellent training in specific areas of
Mathematics, such as Probability and Statistics, Applied Mathematics
etc. Students in this program usually take the same theoretical courses
Basic Algebra (189-235) and Real Analysis I (189-242), as do the
Honours students in their first semester. This allows the student to
get a feel for his/her mathematical ability and possibly switch to an
Honours level math program at the end of the first semester. In case
the student wishes to maintain their second discipline (under option
B), both disciplines will have to be taken at the honours level and the
student should consider the switch to a joint honours program. You
cannot combine the multi-track system with the joint honours system;
you are either in one or the other.

**Minor Concentration in
Mathematics** (18 credits). This program comes in two versions,
one that can be expanded into a Major Concentration in Mathematics and
one, which cannot be so expanded. It is however possible to take this
minor in conjunction with the major Concentration in Mathematics under
option C. This will give a training very comparable to the Faculty of
Science major program.

**Minor Concentration in
Statistics** (18 credits). This is a non-expandable minor in the
sense that it does not offer the possibility of changing one's mind and
doing a Major Concentration in Mathematics. On the other hand, it can
be taken in conjunction with the major Concentration in Mathematics
under option C, for students who wish a very solid training in
Mathematics with additional emphasis in the area of Statistics. This
combination would probably allow the student some opportunity to do
graduate work in Statistics.

The Minor Concentration in Mathematics and the Minor Concentration in
Statistics should not be combined under option C. Students
contemplating this should instead take the Major Concentration in
Mathematics under option A.

In the Faculty of Arts, Faculty Programs serve a different mission from
those in the Faculty of Science. The various Faculty Programs listed in
the Faculty of Science section are not available in the Faculty of
Arts.

### The B. A. & Sc. Degree

This relatively new degree is structured along the lines of the
multitrack program in the Faculty of Arts. The program was brought into
being to satisfy the needs of students who want to combine an arts
discipline and a science discipline more or less equally in the same
degree. You should not undertake this degree unless you definitely fit
this mould. It is for students who are committed and understand what
they want from their university degree.

As far as mathematics is concerned, there is a rule that in this
degree, Mathematics must count as a science discipline. You cannot use
the degree as a backdoor way of obtaining a degree involving
mathematics and another science discipline without satisfying the basic
science requirements. Under the rules of the degree, you have two
options involving mathematics (stated on the assumption of a 90 credit
program):

The major concentration in Mathematics(36 credits) plus one major concentration in Arts(36 credits) plus 18 credits of integrative and elective courses.

A minor concentration in Mathematics or Statistics(18 credits) plus a minor concentration in another science discipline plus a major concentration in Arts(36 credits) plus integrative and elective courses to bring the total number of credits to 90.

The first of these options is not realistic. You could obtain the
same degree in the Faculty of Arts (BA degree) under the multitrack
system with greater flexibility and obtain a degree whose nomenclature
is better understood in the world at large. The second option does
allow some possibilities that are not available with other degrees.

There is also provision for honours and joint honours programs within
the B. A. & Sc. degree. However, at the present time such programs
that have a mathematics component are better undertaken under the B. A.
degree.

### Programs in the Faculty of Management:

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics offers a limited range
of programs to students in the Faculty of Management. The majors
program provides a very solid foundation in Mathematics. The version of
this program offered by the Faculty of Management places strong
emphasis on such areas as Statistics, Numerical Analysis, Discrete
Mathematics and Optimization. Minor Programs are not intended as the
student's primary focus. Students wishing to obtain a broader education
within a structured framework can achieve their goals by declaring
these programs.

**Important Note:** The Faculty of Management calculus
courses Mathematics for Management I (189-130) and Mathematics for
Management II (189-131) are not suitable for the Math Major in
Management. Freshman students envisioning a program in Math should take
Calculus I (189-140) and Calculus II (189-141) in place of these
courses.

**Major in Mathematics
for Management Students** (39 credits).

**Minor in Mathematics**
(18 credits).

**Minor in Statistics**
(18 credits).