Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science provides instruction in the disciplines of Mathematics, Computer Science, and Actuarial Science.

In each of these disciplines, students will encounter and develop a set of precise language and procedural tools to formalize, explore, and solve problems. Each course combines the development of specific practical knowledge with important underlying concepts; this will refine critical thinking and problem-solving skills and prepare students for further academic and professional demands.

A knowledge of Mathematics is essential for every educated person. Students majoring in Mathematics or Mathematics Teaching will achieve a genuine depth of understanding of mathematics, providing excellent preparation for future employment or further studies. The programs in Mathematics are designed in compliance with guidelines from the major professional societies in this field, the MAA and the AMS; the major in Mathematics Teaching also complies with state and national guidelines for teacher preparation.

Computer Science is the art and science of solving problems using computers. Both the major program in Computer Science and the individual courses in this program are designed to provide students with a strong practical background, including specific experiences and current knowledge about practices in computing. This is leveraged by an understanding of the powerful ideas that underlie the discipline and profession of computing; these ideas form an important piece of each course in Computer Science. The program and its courses are designed to comply with curriculum recommendations of the two major professional societies in computing, IEEE and ACM.

Students who are interested in a career in computing, or in obtaining practical knowledge and in exploring the ideas behind computing, should consider majoring in Computer Science or taking several of the courses in the program.

Actuarial science is the science of risk assessment and risk management. Actuarial Science majors take courses in mathematics, economics, and finance that prepare them for a career as an actuary. These courses also prepare students to achieve professional standing as an actuary, providing the background students need to pass a set of exams required by the Society of Actuaries and the Casualty Actuarial Society. Actuaries work primarily for insurance companies, financial firms, and government agencies.

The Department of Mathematics offers a variety of literacy and service courses in both Mathematics and Computer Science. These are designed to provide excellent and appropriate instruction in both of these crucial areas of knowledge, and to help students attain goals in numerical literacy and computer literacy.