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Studying Mathematics in Dundee

Why Mathematics?

The arithmetic, algebra, trigonometry and calculus that you learn at school are only parts of the language in which mathematics is written, and the purpose of further study is to permit you to become fluent in that language so that you can develop a deeper understanding of mathematics, and how it can be used. Mathematics is central to the study of science, and few scientific developments are possible without underlying mathematical theories. Explanations of physical, chemical and biological phenomena often require sophisticated mathematics. For example, mathematics is now extensively used to try to develop a better understanding of human diseases such as cancer and HIV. An understanding of many modern industrial technologies can only be achieved through the derivation and analysis of appropriate mathematical models. Mathematics is also essential in the construction of models of the economy, which influence the decisions of business and government. Furthermore, mathematics is vital to the development of methods of secure communication - used by us all for banking, internet transactions, mobile phone conversations and in many other every-day situations. Therefore mathematics is of central importance in modern society; the demand for people with relevant qualifications is considerable, and a degree in mathematics is a highly marketable asset. Mathematics graduates are consistently amongst those attracting the highest graduate salaries and can choose from an ever widening range of careers in research, industry, science, engineering, commerce, finance and education.

Why Dundee?

staff/student committee The mathematics programme in Dundee is relatively small in scale, and we are able to operate with an excellent staff/student ratio. One advantage of this is that we can get to know each student personally, and so can offer a friendly and supportive learning experience. In addition, we are able to operate an “open door” policy, meaning that any student can contact any member of staff at any time to ask for help. This, together with drop-in help sessions that we run three times a week, means that there is a wide range of opportunities for support of your studies. Our Student-Staff Committee meets regularly to discuss matters of importance to our students.

We believe that undergraduates are best served by studying in a environment in which lecturers are performing research at the highest level, and we are fortunate in having an excellent international reputation for our research work. In the most recent assessment of university research in the UK, we were ranked in the top 10 in the UK (REF 2014 Mathematics results). This means that we are able to offer you lively and modern programmes of study centred on the application of mathematics, presented in a stimulating environment by experts in the field. Our courses, at all levels, are taught by those who have great enthusiasm for their subject, a dedication to it, and an appreciation of the needs of students. As well as offering degrees in Mathematics and Mathematical Biology, we offer a wide range of Joint Honours Degrees, where Mathematics can be combined with a variety of other subjects, for example, Accountancy, Economics, Physics, Astrophysics, Psychology, and English.

picture of computing suite Computing power is used extensively in modern mathematics, particularly in mathematics-related jobs in research, finance and industry. We teach various mathematical software package to our students throughout our mathematics degree, which acts as a preparation for the workplace but also provides an excellent tool for learning mathematics in a very interactive way.

The University is located on a single compact site, only five minutes walk from the city centre. It is well served with new, top-of-the-range student accommodation and the leisure and recreational facilities are excellent. Dundee is set in some of the most attractive countryside in the UK and most outdoor activities can be pursued within a short distance of the University. Rivers, lochs, mountains and beaches are all within easy reach. Dundee is readily accessible by road, rail and plane from the principal population centres of the UK.

Can I visit the University?

You can visit the University on its Open Days, which gives you the opportunity to see the campus before you fill in your UCAS form. Open Days are held around August/September. Contact the Student Recruitment Service for details of these events. Once your UCAS form has been processed and you have been made an offer, you will be invited to visit the University in the period between January and April. During your visit, you will have the opportunity to discuss with us any matter concerning your decision to study at Dundee. These are the formal opportunities to visit, but we are very willing to arrange visits at any time of year for prospective students: just contact Admissions directly or contact our Admissions Tutor Dr D. Pontin . If you have any queries about the courses that we offer or about applications in general, please contact the Admissions Tutor.

Teaching Methods

Honours students Most courses provide instruction by means of 50 minute lectures and tutorials/workshops or computer labs. In a typical week you will attend around 15 hours per week of classes. However, much of your study will be done outside the formal timetable of lectures, tutorials, workshops and computer practicals. You will be able to use computer aided learning packages, specialised software capable of symbolic manipulation and access the virtual learning environment (Blackboard) used throughout the University. As mentioned above, we teach various mathematical software packages to our students throughout our mathematics degree, which provide excellent tools for learning mathematics in a very interactive way.

To assist us in maintaining the highest standards in our teaching, we regularly seek the opinions of students. Lecturers circulate questionnaires towards the end of all lecture courses and there is a Student-Staff Committee with representatives at all levels which meets regularly and provides a forum for discussion. You are also given positive encouragement to discuss with your Adviser of Studies any studying problems which arise.

Maths Base, which is a drop-in facility in the Division is staffed on three afternoons per week and provides another source of help with your studies over and above what you can expect from your lectures and tutorials.