SCHOOL OF MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES - DIT

NEW COURSE

The School of Mathematical Sciences at DIT has been teaching Mathematics at Honours Degree level for several decades, both as part of the now discontinued Applied Science degree, and through its part-time evening programme of single subject Mathematics degrees. With twenty-four specialist full-time staff, the School is able to provide expert tuition by experienced staff in a sympathetic learning environment. As part of its ongoing development programme, the School is now launching a full-time single Honours degree in Mathematical Sciences with first entry in September, 2003.

This exciting initiative provides students with a broadly based programme in Years 1 and 2, from which they proceed to specialist studies in areas of their choice in Years 3 and 4. It is designed to appeal to a wide range of interests, including those who wish to obtain a strong qualification in mainstream mathematics and the opportunity to proceed, if they so wish, to graduate study and higher degrees by research; and also to those students who enjoy mathematics and problem solving but who would like to study some Computer Science, Statistics, Financial Mathematics and Operations Research as well.

The first two years of the programme provide a sound foundation in Mathematics, which will underpin subsequent work, and introduce students to topics in Statistics and Computer Science which they have the option of developing further in later years through specialist study. A key feature of the programme is the way in which third and fourth years are designed in a modular fashion to allow the student significant choice. In a sense the student can design his or her own programme, concentrating on areas in which s/he is most interested. Final year options include Coding, Cryptology and Algebra, Financial Mathematics, Industrial/Commercial Statistics, Optimization, Applied Functional Analysis, Dynamical Systems and Chaos, Graphics and Image Analysis, Numerical Analysis and Fluid Mechanics, Decision Theory and Games. Throughout the programme there are significant opportunities for practical computer-based work, the development of written and oral presentation skills, and participation in problem-based learning.

The programme includes a six month placement in Year 3, during which students gain experience of using their analytical, problem solving and computer skills in a working environment. A major feature of fourth year is the final year project where the skills and knowledge gained in the programme are brought to bear on a research problem of an industrial/commercial or academic nature. There is also a seminar series in the second half of fourth year, the aim of which is to invite experts in various fields of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science to address the students on recent developments in those fields.

There are many career opportunities for numerate graduates. Indeed, an external examiner for the School once said that he had never met an unemployed mathematician. A mathematical or related degree can open up a whole world of opportunities and can thus keep pace with changing employment patterns. While a number of years ago, many graduates found employment in the IT sector, now a very popular destination is in financial services. Graduates of this programme will have highly developed analytical and problem solving skills in a specialist Mathematics/Statistics/Computer Applications context and be in a good position to embark on high achieving careers in industry, commerce, the teaching and other professions, and the public sector. They will also be qualified to proceed to graduate study and higher degrees by research, whether in the School of Mathematical Sciences at DIT, or elsewhere.

As this is a new programme, it does not appear on the CAO form for 2003 and thus prospective students must apply directly to DIT. Application forms for direct entry may be obtained from the Admissions Office, DIT. The minimum entry requirements for the programme are an Irish Leaving Certificate in six subjects including English or Irish, with at least C3 Higher in two subjects and at least B2 Ordinary or D3 Higher in Mathematics or Applied Mathematics, or a qualification which the Institute deems to be equivalent. Note that Higher Level Leaving Certificate Mathematics is not an entry requirement for the programme since many students either have no facility to take the honours course or choose not to take it for tactical reasons.

Further details may be obtained from:

Maev Maguire,
School of Mathematical Sciences,
DIT,
Dublin 8,
Phone: 01 4024842,
email: mmaguire@dit.ie.

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