Menu Menu


The department offers four bachelors degrees. In statistics, the Bachelor of Science degree stresses both the theoretical and the applied sides of the subject and is one of the few undergraduate statistics programs in the country. In addition to extensive course work in statistics, the student is exposed to computer science, ethics (relevant to decisions that statisticians must make on the job), and advanced writing (obviously a useful skill). Concentrated study (16 credits) in some field to which statistics can be applied, such as computer science, engineering, a science, economics, psychology, or another subject of the student's interest, is also required. In mathematics, we offer a basic Bachelor of Arts degree and a more rigorous Bachelor of Science degree. (There is no universal meaning assigned to these names, which date back hundreds of years. Different schools use them to mean different things, such as whether one has studied a foreign language. In our department we have chosen to offer an expanded program under the B.S. label, one requiring two additional mathematical sciences courses, one additional computer science course, and a more in-depth study of a field to which mathematics can be applied.) We also offer a Bachelor of Science degree in actuarial science, in cooperation with the School of Business Administration.

Many students, both current undergraduates and those who already hold a bachelor's degree in some subject (not necessarily mathematics), wish to pursue a program leading to secondary teaching certification in mathematics. Further information on this program (OU STEP) is given below.

The requirements for the B. A. degree in mathematics are:

  • MTH 154, MTH 155, MTH 254 (a three-term calculus sequence)
  • MTH 275 (Linear Algebra), STA 226 (Applied Probability and Statistics)
  • MTH 302 (Introduction to Advanced Mathematical Thinking)
  • MTH 452 (Advanced Calculus I), MTH 475 (Abstract Algebra)
  • Three electives selected from APM 255, APM 263, MOR 242, and 300–400 level APM, MOR, STA, or MTH courses excluding A MTH 497
  • EGR 141 (Computer Problem Solving in Engineering and Computer Science) or CSE 130 (Introduction to Computer Programming)
  • Two additional 3- or 4-credit courses in science, engineering, or computer science
The more rigorous requirements for the B. S. degree in mathematics are:
  • MTH 154-155-254 (a three-term calculus sequence)
  • MTH 275 (Linear Algebra), STA 226 (Applied Probability and Statistics)
  • MTH 302 (Introduction to Advanced Mathematical Thinking)
  • MTH 452-453 (Advanced Calculus I and II), MTH 475 (Abstract Algebra)
  • Four electives selected from APM 255, APM 263, MOR 242, and 300–400 level APM, MOR, STA, or MTH courses excluding MTH 497
  • CSE 230 (Object-Oriented Computing I)
  • Three additional 3- or 4-credit courses in an area related to mathematics
The requirements for the B. S. degree in applied statistics are:
  • STA 226 (an introductory course), 402 (linear models), 427-428 (mathematical statistics), and 12 credits chosen from STA courses numbered above 300 (but not including STA 501-502)
  • MTH 154-155-254 (calculus), 275 (linear algebra), and one more course chosen from APM 255, 263, 332, 433, 434, MTH 452, or MOR 242, 454, 455, 456
  • EGR 141 (Computer Problem Solving in Engineering and Computer Science) or CSE 130 (Introduction to Computer Programming)
  • A course in ethics from the Department of Philosophy
  • ENG 380, 381, or 382 (an advanced writing course)
  • Sixteen credits in a single area outside the Department of Mathematics and Statistics to which statistics could be applied. The 16 credits must include at least one course that is quantitatively oriented. The rest of the 16 credits could come from prerequisite courses or any related courses. These 16 credits must be approved in advance by a department adviser. The courses need not be in a single department, but the total package should constitute a substantive examination of a single area.
The requirements for the B. S. degree in actuarial science are:
  • STA 226 (an introductory statistics course), QMM 241 (a second course in statistics, offered by the School of Business Administration), STA 427 (first half of mathematical statistics), and either STA 402 (linear models) or ECN 405 (econometrics)
  • MTH 154-155-254 (calculus), MTH 275 (linear algebra), and one course chosen from APM 255, APM 433, APM 434, STA 425, or STA 428
  • EGR 141 (Computer Problem Solving in Engineering and Computer Science)
  • ECN 210 (or both 201 and either ECN 200 or ECN 202), ECN 302 (or ECN 321), and ECN 303 (economics courses)
  • ENG 382 (an advanced writing course)
  • ACC 200 and ACC 301(accounting)
  • FIN 322, FIN 416, and FIN 422 (courses in finance)
  • APM 450 or ECN 450 (a capstone course in risk management)
See also this Web page about the degree in actuarial science.

Internships are sometimes available for students pursuing actuarial science.  For example, the Southfield, Michigan, office of the major professional services company Towers Watson has a small number of summer internships.  Other leads might include Blue Cross Blue Shield, MEEMIC, Delta Dental, and some insurance companies in Lansing.  These positions are quite competitive and pay well.  Summer internship positions are posted in October, and phone interviews are conducted in October and November for the following summer.  A student who intends to apply for one should get started in September.  Preference is given to students who have demonstrated a commitment to the field, such as by having attempted an actuarial exam, or, even better, having passed one or two of the exams.  The Be an Actuary website has additional information about internships and getting employment in this area. A recent article explains how hot this field is.

The requirements for a degree in mathematics with secondary certification are:
  • The B. A. or B. S. mathematics requirements, in which APM 263, MTH 462, and MTH 414 are included
  • A certifiable teaching minor (in lieu of the additional courses outside the department)
  • Education courses and internship: SED 300, FE 345, RDG 538, SED 427, SED 428, SED 455, and SE 501. Usually SED 300 is taken during the junior year, and SED 427, FE 345, and RDG 538 are taken during the winter semester (or summer) of the senior year. The remaining courses comprise the internship year.
  • Acceptance into the Seondary Teacher Education Program (STEP) on the basis of grades, standardized test scores, letters of recommendation, and other criteria (see also this list of frequently asked questions about the program)
For all degrees, a 2.0 grade or higher must be earned in each required course. There are additional University and College requirements. Consult the catalog and the department adviser for details. Click here for checklists for these degrees, showing each required course in a box, with prerequisites indicated by arrows.

Click here for some sample schedules for students in the various programs, assuming a student enters in Fall 2010.  Subsequent years should be similar. Students should work with a departmental adviser and advisers in the Arts and Sciences Advising Office in planning the details of their schedules.  The "fifth year" applies only to STEP students.

Last updated: September 11, 2012. Send additions or corrections (or other comments) to Professor Grossman.