Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Mathematics
Note: This is a program for one academic year. Not an REU
The Department of Mathematics at Iowa State University will be offering a Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Mathematics starting with the 2018-2019 academic year.
The Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Mathematics is a program that offers students who have received a Bachelor’s degrees one year of training and preparation for entering a PhD program in Mathematics.
The main goal of the program is to prepare students to be successful in graduate studies in mathematics and to experience graduate school. The program provides a path to study in both pure and applied mathematics.
The program provides a means for those trained in pure mathematics to transition to applied mathematics, in addition to strengthening the background for those continuing in either specialty
In this program students will take 4 courses, serve as teaching assistants in undergraduate courses, get ample mentoring from the department’s faculty and graduate students, attend conferences, and receive professional development to aid in applying to graduate programs (or jobs, if appropriate).
Applicants must submit an application, transcripts, a personal statement, and at least 2 letters of recommendation. Underrepresented minorities, women, veterans, and nontraditional students who want to go back to school are encouraged to apply.
Apply online at https://www.mathprograms.org/db/programs/662. You will need to fill out the Application PDF.
The review of applications will start on March 9 and will continue until all slots are filled.
Part of the application is a personal statement. It would be helpful for us if your statement includes answers to the following questions.
Why are you applying to the program?
What is your anticipated career?
What do you think will be the main benefit(s) of the program to you?
Why do you think you are a good fit for the program?
Are you proficient with calculus? All students in the program will be teaching assistants in classes such as calculus.
We will provide guidance on how to run recitations but we need to know you have experience with the material.
13 total credits hours (12 in graduate courses and 1 seminar credit)
12 credits from MATH and STAT classes acceptable for graduate credit.
These 12 credits must include at least 9 credits chosen from MATH 501, MATH 503X, MATH 507, MATH 518X, MATH 565X, MATH 581X, MATH 569X, STAT 500 (see the description below.)
For mathematics, courses will normally include MATH 501 and MATH 503X and at least one of MATH 507, MATH 569X.
For applied mathematics, courses will normally include MATH 518X and MATH 581X and at least one of MATH 501, MATH 507.
MATH 591 (0.5 credit, Orientation for Math. Graduate Students in the fall).
MATH 592 (0.5 credits Orientation for Math. Graduate Students in the spring).
GPA at least 3.00
A grade of C or better in every course
A listing of all courses offered by the math department are at http://catalog.iastate.edu/azcourses/math/
The postbaccalaureate students will generally take specially designed courses, that serve also gradate students and advanced undergraduate students.
Students will get individual help with choosing the right classes based on their skills and goals before the semester begins.
Classes planned for the first year of the program:
MATH 501 Introduction to Real Analysis (3-0) Cr. 3. F.
Classes to be introduced later:
A development of the real numbers. Study of metric spaces, completeness, compactness, sequences, and continuity of functions. Differentiation and integration of real-valued functions, sequences of functions, limits and convergence, equicontinuity.
MATH 507 Applied Linear Algebra (3-0) Cr. 3. F.
Advanced topics in applied linear algebra including eigenvalues, eigenvalue localization, singular value decomposition, symmetric and Hermitian matrices, nonnegative and stochastic matrices, matrix norms, canonical forms, matrix functions. Applications to mathematical and physical sciences, engineering, and other fields.
STAT 500 Statistical Methods I (3-2) Cr. 4. F.
Analysis of data from designed experiments and observational studies. Randomization-based inference; inference on group means; nonparametric bootstrap; pairing/blocking and other uses of restricted randomization. Use of linear models to analyze data; least squares estimation; estimability; sampling distributions of estimators; general linear tests; inference for parameters and contrasts. Model assessment and diagnostics; remedial measures; alternative approaches based on ranks.
Math 518X Introduction to applied mathematics and partial differential equations . (3-0) Cr. 3. S.
Basic theory of ordinary differential equations, existence and uniqueness theorems, linear systems, linearization and stability, ODE models in biology and physics, modeling with partial differential equations, dynamical systems techniques.
Math 503X Algebra and Applications (3-0) Cr. 3. S.
Groups, rings, fields, Lie algebras and applications. Emphasis on rings and fields.
Math 581X Numerical methods for differential equations (3-0) Cr. 3. S.
First order Euler method, high order Runge-Kutta method, and multistep method for solving ordinary differential equations. Finite difference and finite element methods for solving partial differential equations. Local truncation error, stability, and convergence for finite difference method. Numerical solution space, polynomial approximation, and error estimate for finite element method.
Math 565X Introduction to mathematical modeling (3-0) Cr. 3. S.
Development of skills in mathematical modeling through practical experience. Use of computational methods to investigate mathematical models. Students will work in groups on specific projects involving real-life problems that are accessible to their existing mathematical backgrounds, and make oral and written presentations of results.
Math 569X Introduction to discrete mathematics (3-0) Cr. 3. S.
Combinatorial counting, binomial theorem, estimates of factorial, inclusion-exclusion principle, permutations without fixed points, double counting, graphs, subgraphs, graph score, connectivity, triangle-free graphs, graph isomorphism, planar graphs, points in general position, H-polytope, V-polytope, cyclic polytope, Farkas lemma, linear programming and duality.
Participants will be assigned mentors from faculty as well as from graduate students.
A special section of MATH 591 will offered for postbaccalaureate students. The seminar will
include preparation of materials for application to grad school, preparation for GRE exams, panels with graduate students
and other professional development activities.
Teaching and Funding
Postbaccalaureate graduate students will be funded by teaching assistantships.
Hence the students will lead recitations in classes such as calculus. The duties will usually include running two to three
recitations per week, holding office hours, grading quizzes and exams, and proctoring exams.
The teaching assistantships come with some coverage of tuition and they provide sufficient support to cover living expenses in Ames.
The students in the program will participate in usual departmental life. That means attending seminars, colloquia, and other events organized in the department.
We have applied for financial support for student travel to conferences.
Students may also participate in EDGE or MOCA.
Frequently Asked Questions
These are questions asked by some participants.
Is housing provided?
No. You are on your own to find a place to stay. Ames has some specifics since it is a college town. Almost all leases are from August 1 to July 31. If you want to get a shorter lease, be prepared to pay a premium for it.
When looking for houses, you may consider looking at https://www.cyride.com to see bus routes around the town. Getting a place close to some bus route is useful.
The buses are free for students.
There is no parking next to the building of department. However, there is a commuter lot by the football stadium and a frequent free bus running between the parking lot and the campus.
Ames is also quite bike friendly, not during winter, and it is easy to lock the bike at the stands in front of the building.
There are no neighborhoods in Ames that one should avoid for safety reasons.
Do you provide relocation assistance?
No. If you fly, the nearest airport is in Des Moines.
There is a shuttle service between Ames and Des Moines https://www.executiveexpress.biz or you may contact us and see if we can help with getting to Ames from the airport.
Can I take any classes I want?
You can pick exactly two classes from the provided list above each semester.
You cannot take more classes or classes outside of the list above. If you are interested in other topics, we can arrange for you to sit in other classes.
When do I need to get to Ames?
During the week BEFORE classes start. Calendar of when classes start is at http://www.registrar.iastate.edu/calendar.
There will be some orientation, paperwork, and training during that week. You will be given exact schedule later.
If you want to come earlier, that is perfectly fine but you will need to entertain yourself.
When do I get paid?
You get money on the last bussiness day of each month. You get 9 months of stipend. Since the school begins in the middle of August and ends in the middle of May,
1 of the 9 months is split between August and May. That means, the first stipend you receive at the end of August will be significantly lower than the usual stipend.
When will I know my teaching assignment?
The teaching assignments are done over the summer. Most students know their assignments during the week before classes start.
Sometimes, there might be last minute changes.
If you have any questions do not hesitate to contact Michael Young or Bernard Lidicky
PS: The website is still under construction and more info will appear eventually. If you have some particular question, just let us know.