The Pythagorean theorem, binomial formulas, differential equations and curve discussions – we can’t avoid mathematics at school. No wonder: it is the mother of all sciences. For more than 2,500 years, scholars have been looking for generally applicable mathematical laws to make processes in the world explainable. With success. Physical laws and chemical formulas are formulated in the language of mathematics. Technical progress also depends to a large extent on their knowledge. Without math, we wouldn’t have computers, MP3 players, or cell phones. It is also used to forecast the weather, assess investment risks or calculate prices for stock options.
An overview of the mathematics course
According to TOPSCHOOLSOFLAW, anyone who has enjoyed working with equations and formulas in school is in good hands with mathematics. However, the course is very different from the classic math lessons in school. It is no longer a question of using the right arithmetic techniques to solve a task set by the teacher. Rather, the students have to recognize the structure of scientific, technical or economic problems , translate them into the language of mathematics and develop their own solutions. To do this, they use a formula that has little to do with the blackboard paintings in school. Students also rarely use the calculator. This requires a lot of logical understanding and a certain creativity required.
In the first two semesters of the bachelor’s degree, the first two basic subjects are :
- Linear Algebra
In analysis, the students deal with functions, while in linear algebra it is about general laws of calculation and number theory. In the further course of the course there are also subjects such as
- Differential equations
- Modeling and
- mathematical optimization
In the higher semesters, the students finally decide on a focus . You can choose between two fields of work :
- Applied Mathematics
- Pure math
The latter deals with algebra, number theory or geometry, while applied mathematics seeks solutions to problems in other areas of science. Possible focus areas are engineering, computer or financial mathematics.
The majority of all students follow a bachelor’s degree with a master’s degree. On the one hand, this qualifies for management positions and, on the other hand, offers the opportunity to deepen the knowledge acquired in the bachelor’s degree. The master’s degree is also a prerequisite for a doctorate and a subsequent career in research.
Budding math teachers must also complete a master’s degree in order to be able to go to school. The master’s degree is usually very research-oriented. The students specialize in a sub-area such as stochastics or optimization and deal with current research questions. In the area of applied mathematics, students often combine the subject with another subject such as statistics , business administration or computer science .
Requirements for studying mathematics
Almost all universities and many technical colleges offer a degree in mathematics. The universities of applied sciences predominantly offer practice-oriented courses in the field of applied mathematics. Here the students combine the subject with another subject such as business administration or computer science.
Anyone interested in studying math should be able to think logically and abstractly . Persistence and patience are also required when dealing with complicated math problems. In the master’s programs, good English skills are also required in order to understand the mostly English-language specialist literature.
Mathematicians are in demand in almost all areas of science and work. Graduates thus have good career prospects. In addition to their mathematical knowledge, employers particularly value their ability to think in a solution-oriented manner. Many graduates later find work in the areas of risk or project management at insurance companies and banks. Here they calculate risk premiums or calculate new financial products.
Consulting companies and associations also use mathematicians. For example, you optimize the production processes in large companies or are involved in market research . In large industrial companies, they test new models and products in computer simulations or work in quality control.
Those who have also dealt with computer science during their studies will also find numerous employment opportunities in the IT industry . Mathematicians program databases and computer games or develop electronic cash systems. Further fields of work arise in the areas of telecommunications, medical technology , engineering and the energy industry.
Graduate teachers are usually employed as math teachers at a school. Master’s graduates also have the opportunity to do a doctorate and embark on an academic career.
Benefits of international experience for mathematicians
One or two semesters abroad during your studies are ideal to expand your personal and professional experience. It not only offers you the opportunity to get to know a different culture and many interesting people, but also to gain important intercultural skills. At the same time, you will acquire new foreign language skills or optimize your existing ones. Every employer appreciates international experience. It signals open-mindedness, flexibility and a willingness to develop.