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26-07-2011, 19:47   #1
Pancake16
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Maths in Economics and Finance

Hey guys, I'm going into 6th year in September and I'd love to go to UCD. I'm thinking of putting down Economics and Finance on my CAO form.

I've a few questions about the course though:
-How difficult is the maths side of it? Would you need to find LC honours maths easy?
-What types of maths are involved? (i.e. calculus,algebra)
-Is there much theoretical content or is it mostly maths based?
-Is it a more highly regarded degree which would offer greater employment prospects in the financial sector than a commerce or BESS (TCD) degree?

I am fairly competent at Maths. I got an A in Junior Cert higher level quite comfortably. However, I find LC maths more difficult but would consider myself a solid B student (i.e. I can answer all part a's and b's and some but not all part c's). I got an A1 in both Christmas and Summer tests in 5th year but I feel this was kind of a false indicator as my teacher takes most of the questions from the exam papers which I use to study and so I have some of the questions done in advance.

I do both accounting and economics and thoroughly enjoy both of them. I really enjoy the logical challenges of Maths and would be willing to work hard if I did get into the course.

Basically, I'd love to do this degree but I'm concerned I won't be able to handle some of the more difficult maths and that I'll be out of my league.

Any info from people who're doing the course or who know people who are doing it or anyone who knows anything about this course would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance
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28-07-2011, 16:16   #2
Michael Collins
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Well since you're getting no replies here I'll just point out that there's a Maths Support Centre in UCD where you can go if you're having trouble. By all accounts they're very helpful. They won't do the work for you but they'll try to make it as easy as possible to learn.
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29-07-2011, 09:38   #3
dtmc
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http://www.ucd.ie/students/course_search.htm

If you take a look at the Ec&Fi link here under the Business section you can take a look at the different modules you'd be studying and read up what you'll be learning in each.

By all accounts, there's a nice amount of statistics(not too difficult if you like stats) between the first two years anyway.
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29-07-2011, 14:46   #4
**Timbuk2**
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I do a similar degree to Ec+Fi, Actuarial and Financial Studies.

I've just finished first year and love it and Ec+Fi and Actuarial have a good few modules in common for first year. If you have any questions about Principles of Micro, Principles of Macro, Intro to Stat. Modelling, Stat. Modelling or Financial Accounting 1, feel free to ask me!

I don't do the same maths modules as you but I did a few similar ones (Linear Algebra and Calculus) and found them ok! I haven't done Analysis so I'm not sure what that is like though.
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29-07-2011, 17:12   #5
Pancake16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Collins View Post
Well since you're getting no replies here I'll just point out that there's a Maths Support Centre in UCD where you can go if you're having trouble. By all accounts they're very helpful. They won't do the work for you but they'll try to make it as easy as possible to learn.
Didn't know about that! Sounds good thanks.

**Timbuk2**, I'm not too worried about the principles of micro or macro or the financial accounting stuff because we do some of that stuff for the Leaving Cert and I find it ok. What was stat modelling like? Is the maths very intense or if you had a good grip of leaving cert HL maths would you be able to manage? And how did you find the linear algebra and calculus? Was it a big step up from LC?
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29-07-2011, 18:19   #6
**Timbuk2**
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Yea, there's no need to worry about Principles of Micro or Macro - I didn't do economics for the LC and got on grand in both of those! Financial Accounting 1 is actually easier than LC Accounting, as it's aimed at both people who have done it for the LC and people who haven't!

I thought Stat Modelling was easy enough, there's a lot of numbers but it's not that mathsy (it makes more sense in my head than it does written down!). I really enjoy statistics though and I find if you enjoy a subject it's never as hard because studying it isn't such a chore The Intro to Stat Modelling module in the first semester is fairly easy, basically starting off with the methods used to gather data, what makes a survey/study reliable, the different methods of data collection, and then it moves onto what you do with the data, so for the first few weeks of stats there's hardly any maths.

The second semester module of Stat Modelling is more numbers based, and it deals with Inferential statistics (basically, you are given data and you have to make inferences using this data) which covers things like hypothesis tests, analysis of variance, regression, etc. - again, it's not overly difficult once you keep up with the work.

I wouldn't say the maths is a huge step up from Leaving Cert but it's different. There's less emphasis on computational maths and more emphasis on understanding it - theorems and proofs are a lot more common than they are at LC. For example, in your LC textbooks, you might be given a formula and told to use that to solve problems, and then you'll have a list of 30 problems, the first will be easy, the second will be easy, the third will be easy but will be written in term's of t instead of x's (for example), and so on so forth until you get to the tricky questions at the end. There's less computations for uni maths - you might learn the basic ideas of a section with easy problems, but use your knowledge and theorems to solve tricky/abstract problems!

I found calculus ok whereas I thought Linear Algebra was a bit harder. Linear Algebra is mainly matrices and vector spaces, and while the matrices are fairly ok, I found vector spaces / fields / groups to be difficult to get my head around at first (and it's not at all like the vectors you do for LC!).

Hope this helps!
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02-08-2011, 11:34   #7
Pancake16
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Originally Posted by **Timbuk2** View Post
Yea, there's no need to worry about Principles of Micro or Macro - I didn't do economics for the LC and got on grand in both of those! Financial Accounting 1 is actually easier than LC Accounting, as it's aimed at both people who have done it for the LC and people who haven't!

I thought Stat Modelling was easy enough, there's a lot of numbers but it's not that mathsy (it makes more sense in my head than it does written down!). I really enjoy statistics though and I find if you enjoy a subject it's never as hard because studying it isn't such a chore The Intro to Stat Modelling module in the first semester is fairly easy, basically starting off with the methods used to gather data, what makes a survey/study reliable, the different methods of data collection, and then it moves onto what you do with the data, so for the first few weeks of stats there's hardly any maths.

The second semester module of Stat Modelling is more numbers based, and it deals with Inferential statistics (basically, you are given data and you have to make inferences using this data) which covers things like hypothesis tests, analysis of variance, regression, etc. - again, it's not overly difficult once you keep up with the work.

I wouldn't say the maths is a huge step up from Leaving Cert but it's different. There's less emphasis on computational maths and more emphasis on understanding it - theorems and proofs are a lot more common than they are at LC. For example, in your LC textbooks, you might be given a formula and told to use that to solve problems, and then you'll have a list of 30 problems, the first will be easy, the second will be easy, the third will be easy but will be written in term's of t instead of x's (for example), and so on so forth until you get to the tricky questions at the end. There's less computations for uni maths - you might learn the basic ideas of a section with easy problems, but use your knowledge and theorems to solve tricky/abstract problems!

I found calculus ok whereas I thought Linear Algebra was a bit harder. Linear Algebra is mainly matrices and vector spaces, and while the matrices are fairly ok, I found vector spaces / fields / groups to be difficult to get my head around at first (and it's not at all like the vectors you do for LC!).

Hope this helps!
I think I'd be ok for the statistics because I like that sort of maths and we do a bit more statistics in the new Project Maths course.
I think I might find the Algebra and Calculus a bit harder though!

Thanks for all your help, it's greatly appreciated
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03-08-2011, 22:11   #8
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I came on to answer your questions about maths but then saw that Timbuk2 had taken care of it.
Leaving Cert B level is the standard you'd want to keep up really. After the first year I understand it's mostly stats and the other maths courses are specialised ones as opposed to being lumped in with maths and theoretical physics students so it should be graaand.

As for jobs, well, they arrange interviews and work experience with PWC and places like that, and they encourage students to build up networks so there probably aren't many better career-oriented courses. The uptake rate on the interviews is quite high, I've been told, although much of that is true for Commerce as well.
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