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Congratulations! You’ve finally finished your undergraduate studies and now have a bachelor’s degree to show for it. From this point forward, you can check off that box on every job application that asks for your college degree. Many people may have you believe that by simply being able to do that, you place yourself and your resume at the front of the line for each position you apply for. However, you may quickly discover that many of those with whom you’re competing for jobs also have the same qualifications. Thus, while your undergraduate degree will certainly open new doors for you, it may also only serve to level the playing field with the rest of your competition.
So how can you stand out from the rest? Consider the benefits that furthering your education may offer you. If your future career path involves analytics, engineering, economics, or any of the physical sciences, a master’s degree in mathematics may be just the tool that you need to place yourself at the front of the job line. Mathematics is one of the few academic disciplines that can be applied across most fields; showing prospective employers that you have a mastery of it will go far in earning you their respect, consideration, and hopefully, job approval.
What is a Master’s Program in Mathematics?
A graduate degree in mathematics helps you to learn the principles needed to use advanced numeric formulas to help solve real-world problems. Remember all of those practical applications they spoke about in your undergraduate math programs? Here is where you develop the fundamental knowledge needed to apply them in different scenarios.
The prospect of seeking an advanced degree in a field as complex as math may seem daunting, yet it shouldn’t be. If you’re at least considering the idea, then it shows that you’re adept enough at math to tackle the coursework that you would encounter in a graduate mathematics program. Did your undergraduate studies not highlight mathematics? Not to worry; your standard college coursework was likely enough to provide you with the foundation you need in algebra and geometry. While your graduate course curriculum will go deeper into other areas such as calculus, differential equations, and abstract and linear algebra, you can easily introduce yourself to these concepts by taking leveling coursework prior to applying for your graduate program. Talk to the academic advisors with the programs that you are considering to see what they recommend you to do to prepare yourself.
Once you get into your mathematics graduate program, you’ll quickly see topics and philosophies begin to be grouped into two general categories:
- Theoretical Mathematics: Also known as pure mathematics, theoretical math is primarily concerned with abstract concepts. All of the numerical formulas used in real-world applications started with theoretical mathematicians developing theories based on the intrinsic nature of various philosophies. Here, your focus is much more on the why as opposed to the how.
- Applied Mathematics: As the name implies, applied mathematics is where mathematical models are analysed and manipulated for practical uses in the science, medical, engineering, and financial industries (just to name a few). Your studies in this field will often branch off into other disciplines to help you develop the specialised knowledge needed to see how math applies to industry-specific scenarios.
What Are the Benefits of Taking a Master's degree in Mathematics?
You’ve just completed four to five grueling years of undergraduate work; why would you want to sign yourself up for at least two more? To answer this, you need to go back to the introductory scenario; what if you find the field in which you wish to work saturated with candidates who also possess similar skills and qualifications? It’s only by advancing your own skill set that you’re able to give yourself a leg up in the job search. The more letters you’re able to place after your name, the better your chances are at landing the job that you covet.
Yet a more impressive resume is not the only reason to consider a master’s in mathematics. Think of the statement you’re making to employers by showing them such an achievement. It speaks to your ambition, your drive, determination to excel, and your overall work ethic. Those who’ve demonstrated such skills in the past typically will command a higher salary in order to secure their services.
What Kind of Career Can You Expect with a Master’s degree in Mathematics?
With a master’s degree in mathematics in hand, you’ll find yourself capable of pursuing any number of career opportunities, including:
- Statistical Analysis: Private sector employers such as financial institutions, healthcare organisations, and professional corporations along with government agencies place great value in predictive modeling. Statisticians are able to take data and use it to determine probabilities, allowing their employers to make decisions regarding the future based on what their analysis provides.
- Actuarial Science: Using financial statistics to determine probable outcomes is a skill greatly coveted by the insurance industry. An actuary takes all available data and uses it to assess what the financial cost to a provider would be based upon and the risk that a potential policy holder presents. Due to their abilities to save insurance companies millions in claims, actuaries are often in high demand, and are well-compensated.
- Teaching: If you want to help prepare the next generation of executives, doctors, scientists, and engineers, then you may find a career in teaching mathematics at the primary, secondary, or post-secondary levels very rewarding.
As you can see, a Master’s in Mathematics can be the key to opening countless doors in your future.
Irvine, United States
- 83SchoolApply Rank
- USD 28,000Average Tuition
- 30%Acceptance Rate
The University of California - Irvine is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities with a campus in Irvine; a suburban area in California, U.S.A. Through its faculties, the university offers over master’s degree programs....
Chester, United Kingdom
- 118SchoolApply Rank
- USD 14,563Average Tuition
- 65%Acceptance Rate
The University of Chester is one of the oldest universities in the UK. Founded in 1839, it is a public university situated in Chester, England. The University has dedicated faculties, through which it delivers master’s degree programs to local and international students. ...
- 122SchoolApply Rank
- USD 14,342Average Tuition
- 0Acceptance Rate
The Trinity College Dublin (TCD) is located in Dublin, Ireland. Situated in the multicultural European Capital, TCD offers undergraduate courses in a wide range of disciplines that come under the faculties of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; Engineering, Mathematics and Science; and Health Sciences. ...
Wolverhampton, United Kingdom
- 168SchoolApply Rank
- USD 15,891Average Tuition
- 0Acceptance Rate
The University of Wolverhampton offers more than 500 courses through 18 schools and institutes. Located Wolverhampton, England, the university offers bachelor's and master's degree programs. Some of the schools and institutes available include the School of Humanities, School of Biology, Chemistry and Forensic Science, and the Institute of Sport....
Chicago, United States
- 170SchoolApply Rank
- USD 42,430Average Tuition
- 74%Acceptance Rate
The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) is a public research university in Chicago, Illinois, United States and has 15 academic schools through which it offers interesting master’s degree programs in a wide range of subject areas....
Dundee, United Kingdom
- 177SchoolApply Rank
- USD 19,964Average Tuition
- 80%Acceptance Rate
The University of Dundee (DU) is a public research university located in the city of Dundee, Scotland. The University has dedicated faculties through which it delivers master's degree programs to both local and international students ...
Salt Lake City, United States
- 185SchoolApply Rank
- USD 21,296Average Tuition
- 81.7%Acceptance Rate
University of Utah (the U) is a research-focused university located in Utah, United States, with it’s Asia campus located in South Korea. The U offers a wide range of master’s degree programs across nearly a 100 academic departments. These departments include Architecture, Biochemistry, Computing, Environmental Engineering, and Philosophy....
Normal, United States
- 192SchoolApply Rank
- USD 33,465Average Tuition
- 74%Acceptance Rate
Illinois State University is the first publicly-funded higher education institution in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois. It offers undergraduate majors and graduate degree programs in a wide variety of concentrations including applied science and technology, arts and sciences, business, education, fine arts, and nursing. Illinois State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission....
Chicago, United States
- 201SchoolApply Rank
- USD 52,402Average Tuition
- 70%Acceptance Rate
DePaul University is a private Catholic University located in Chicago, Illinois, US. DePaul University offers master's degre programmes in fields including Business, Engineering, Computer Science, Social Sciences and more. DePaul University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission to grant master's degree programmes. ...
Pittsburgh, United States
- 209SchoolApply Rank
- USD 25,000Average Tuition
- 73%Acceptance Rate
Duquesne University is one of the largest and most comprehensive private Catholic universities located in the urban area of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States. Duquesne offers a wide variety of master's degree programs....