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Pure Maths as a Degree
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conorstuff wrote: »Anyone done mathematical science in UCD?
I have it put down first on my CAO at the moment.
im in final yr maths science. it's a good course but fairly tough. it starts off easy enough with a combination of maths(linear algebra and calculus), maths physics (differential equs, mechanics) and a bit of comp programming. The programming part in my opinion is pointless as you never need it after this.
Second yr is a bit more interesting. you just continue on from 1st yr subjects but this time you get a few stats modules. they kind of throw you in at the deep end with the stats and we all struggled with it for a while. my advice would be to pick an intro to stats as an elective in 1st yr as it will really help you with the more difficult parts.
in 3rd yr you only have 2 core modules and you get to pick the rest yourself. this is a great idea i think. it lets you have two years of everything and then concentrate on what you really like in the last two years.
final year then is all up to you.
there are some very interesting subjects depending on what you like. special relativity, although difficult, is very interesting. there are a few modules on coding and binary which are interesting as well. it's a great course in my opinion. there's only 6 of us in the year which makes everything very easy and enjoyable.
as regards careers, the guys in the year ahead of us are doin a mixture of things. one is starting a phd in stats, others are doing a masters in accounting, a teaching hdip, hdip in actuary and a masters in meteorology. one guy got a job in dell and is pretty happy with it. you should definitely have a think about it. LC points aren't a problem with this course. they offer 16 places for it but rarely fill up the spaces. get your B1 in maths and you'll be in.0 
Final year maths in TCD, just want to say it does not change in the later years, its still fairly ****. Getting into more specific areas doesn't make it more interesting. ANd in general, no problem solving or anything, no logical thinking, just learning a whole load of BS off so as to write it back down on an exam paper. My main problem with it is, that it is so useless and nonrealworldapplicable.
Fair enough the maths engineers use does help them build bridges or whatever but the stuff pure maths people do isn't that, and is no help to anyone whatsoever. Mathematicians seem to just make stuff up as they go along, defining new concepts for their own enjoyment and then seeing what they can do with it, proving theorems and the like. Especially seeing as you most probably wouldn't do any more maths after your undergrad.
Not interesting in any way and really demanding in terms of difficulty, and the massive amount of work you have to do.
And as that other person said its not in any way like 2nd level maths. I don't think you have to be amazingly superclever to succeed its probably more important to really like it and so then have a good enthusiasm for doing loads of study  but again I agree if you're scraping Bs then it will be too hard for you and you won't work enough. Sounds terrible but its the truth. The best way to find out what its like is go to www.maths.tcd.ie and read some of the lecture notes you find, or else wiki stuff like topology, abstract/linear algebra or complex analysis  and you can see how boring/terrible it is.0 
Hey!:)
I was just wondering if ye could give me a bit of advice. Im thinking of putting down Mathematical Sciences UCC down on my CAO, but am still a bit unsure. Ive looked up the course prospectus ang looked around on the internet about maths sci and I dont know anyone who did mathematical sciences in uni, I only know a 1st year, so I was just wondering if anyone could give me a bit of info/opinions of a maths sci degree in general?:
If anyone has done this course, did you like it and did you regret doing it? I know theres quite a big jump from leaving cert HL maths, Im sure a lot of people would have been overwhelmed by the difference.
And also, what are the job opportunities from doing this course besides maths teaching?
And I know this is quite a stupid question but anyway, Im not particularly interested in how a computer works, functions etc and I know this is quite a mathematically based area, so considering this would maths science not be the best route for me to go down? I dont mind using computers, but I just dont find it particularly interesting to learn about.
Any comments or feedback will be greatly appreciated! Thanks!:)0 
Hey Xtina, Im currently in the first year of the course, and my brother just graduated from it (how original does that make me?!), as did his friends, so I know a little about it.
Basically theres a number of streams in it. About half the people do the Finance/Actuarial side of things because it culminates in a well paying job. Most people seem to like "career degrees" where theres guaranteed money at the end. I cant claim to have talked to anyone whos doing the financial maths who just really likes Finance. A good salary seems to be the prime motivator.
Over half the remaining lot of people do Physics and plan to continue it in second year I'd say. And then theres the humble "pure" mathematicians. We form a minority because theres a conception out there that its insecure in terms of employment.
I would disagree with this. Yes its not as secure as Finance. But the fact remains that if you graduate well in a third level Maths course your going to end up doing more than drawing the dole .. or secondary teaching. One of the guys who graduated in Physics one year subsequently got a job in Finance. The degree basically shows you've brains (or so I like to convince myself ).
I cant comment much else on careers. My bros currently doing a PhD, as are many of his friends, but thats a lot due to the global downturn.
The Maths (20 credits) and Stats (5 credits) moduless form a moderate jump from LC Maths. Nothing that blows you out of the water. Just attend all the classes and do the minimum work! The Applied Maths(15 credits) is where most of the problems arise. Its really advantageous if you've done AM at leaving level, though not necessary. If you haven't it will just take a little work!
The computers thing: there is a base level of computer work in the course. At the moment one of our compulsory modules is in computers, and a half of another one. Ive also taken two optional computer modules. In second year theres a programming module in Applied Maths.
Computers are important, but theres not a lot demanded. I'm very into computers, but in my class thats the special case. Once you put in the work it shouldn't be too hard.
In general I like the course. Some of the lecturers are great, some are shocking, but I'm sure thats the norm in "research institutes". The Maths dept is in the new West Gate Building opened last September which is a fantastic facility and the envy of many in the Uni! If your into Maths I don't see why you wouldn't enjoy it. And if your really into it the Boole Library is an excellent resource for advancing in your spare time if your into that.
And also, saying your in Maths Science sounds well impressive0 
I did a half maths/half CS degree, and now I'm doing a PhD in probability theory. A maths degree is hard work. Hard goddamn work. I nearly quit in third year because I was used to coasting through school with minimal effort.
The weird thing about it is, once you've internalised the concepts involved, they change from being quite difficult and abstract to being totally natural and trivial. You might struggle through second year, but you'll look back on it a year later and be amazed at how easy everything you learned is.
Maybe invest in a copy of the Princeton companion to mathematics (which I mentioned recently in another post). It's long and expensive, but it's a relatively friendly guide to the whole of modern mathematics. You'll see what the field is about, and what people consider interesting, if nothing else.
With respect to job prospects, you're no worse off than an arts grad, and in many respects far better off. People see B.Sc maths and they think *smart*.0 
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I'm only in first year Mathematical Science in UCD but I suppose it couldn't hurt to give a brief summary of how things have been shaping up for me early on.
One thing I did notice that it simply requires a bit of a higher floor when it comes to work ethic. Personally I found Honours Maths to be within my easiest subjects and it was always the 'light, feelgood' homework I did when I wanted to pretend that I had done at least some homework on time.
There may be a few who felt the same way. The course does require a B1 by the way.
The main problem I've had is that I've become a bit drunk on the freedom and flexibility of college which has only made me even more lazy and I'm finding myself only doing halfassed assignments at the last minute. This is a personal problem that I'm trying to deal with but I think it might be a fair warning to those who might be a bit too laidback.
In terms of subject matter, I've found that the times that I manage to get over my laziness I find it to be very interesting and enjoyable. First semester modules involve core modules in Linear Algebra, Number Theory, Mathematical Modeling and Statistics. In semester 2 we're doing more modeling, Mechanics and Special Relativity, Analysis of Variance (Stats), more indepth stuff on the basics of Calculus and a module in general problem solving techniques and strategies which essentially continues on from some of Number Theory.
There's a module that introduces you to Mechanics in Semester 1 if you never took or got less than a B in Applied Maths so I wouldn't worry about not having experienced it before. Here's some information on the modules anyhow.
Overall I'm a bit glad I didn't have Actuarial Studies down as my 1st choice, even if I wouldn't have gotten it with my points. Statistics had turned out to be my least favourite among the 3 'main' module types (Pure maths, Applied maths, Stats). I believe I heard that there is some sort of short postgrad option available that offers some exemptions from the exams but I may have completely misheard in my sleepless state. Either way, it might be something to look into if you're wondering whether you should go straight into actuary or get a more rounded maths education.0 
This thread has prompted a few thoughts, for what they are worth.
I did Single Honor Maths in Trinity. Unfortunately due to health problems, I had to drop out after second year. But I did well in all the second year subjects so did do quite a lot of maths (second year subjects were finals for TSMs – two subject moderatorship students i.e. Maths and an arts subject although some would do one or two of the third/fourth year courses and now Maths and Economics subject have to do more third/fourth year Maths subjects).
I found the maths lectures much more structured that the Olympiad lectures. I have a recollection of somebody saying that they thought Olympiad lectures could put people off doing maths in college. The Olympiad lectures used to jump all over the place while the maths courses in Trinity slowly built up.
I never looked at proper maths books before going to college. I could see how they might scare people.
I think ecksor put it well:Last year's maths is easy.
This year's maths is hard.
Next year's maths is impossible.
I liked studying maths. It rewarded my rigour – you don’t have to accept stuff on faith. I was a fussy student in school e.g. wouldn’t like to learn off letters in French and German if I didn’t understand what they meant.
Also you had time to be rigorous while I think I would have found Engineering frustrating as the hours were so long and there was so much to cover.
If you are not going to be a disciplined student, I’m not sure how enjoyable you’ll find the course. Lots of people ended up learning off theorems which would be very boring to me. Of course, it’s easier to become a disciplined student in a subject you’re interested in.
I didn’t know much about computers going into the course and wouldn’t have felt confident to have chosen a computer degree – some people in school would have known terms about computers which I didn’t understand. But I got into it in college and learned to enjoy the satisfaction one can get from getting a program to work. I see now you don’t have to take the computer module in first year – you pick two out of Mechanics/Mathematical Physics, Statistics and Probability and Computing. Out of those three, a lot of people found Mechanics/Mathematical Physics the toughest. I had App. Maths and Physics so it seemed a natural progression while if I hadn't done App. Maths, I'd say I could have found it tough enough.0 
Hey,
I'm currently studying Financial and Actuarial maths in DCU, and want to find out more about Maths Postgrad opportunities. I see there's one or two postgrads on the forum here! Just wondering if you would have any advice on where I should look for info, any of your own experiences, anything really.
I have a good bit of time before I really have to think about it, but I have enjoyed the degree so far, and I'd love to keep going!0 
Financial maths postgrads can be crazy expensive. In some cases, it may be better to go for a maths postgrad and take the probability/analysis courses.
Cambridge part III is pretty much the gold standard if you want to learn hardcore probability theory. If you do well there, you can pretty much have your pick of finance jobs or PhD places.
http://www.dpmms.cam.ac.uk/~twk/PartIII.pdf
Of course, it all depends what you're interested in. PhD places are a bit different, better just to send an email to whoever might be your supervisor and talk things over.
UCD does a respectable quant finance program, as does DCU. There are more available in the UK. Among the best there are math/comp finance at Oxford, the program at Warwick and the program at Imperial.0 
Leave the finance ones to the side for a minute,
I'd be interested in a maths one I think0 
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I'd think about a UK university then. Again, Cambridge is tops. Oxford and Imperial come close though. Of course, there are millions of other possibilities too. I don't know a whole lot about the various programs in Ireland, sone of the other lads will be able to tell you.
Again, it really depends what area you're interested in.0 
Thanks, I'll have more of a look into UK Uni's
Meant to say that in my course I liked the probabilty, and stats, Fourier, and Linear algebra. I also liked any of the programing I have done so far (Java,R,Matlab).0 
do ya need a science to do a mathematics course?0

peterpoker wrote: »do ya need a science to do a mathematics course?
No, you just need to meet whatever requirements they have for honours maths, usually a B3. Applied Maths would be useful, but not essential.
Physics would be handy as well if you wanted to do physics as well as maths, like you can do in my course, Maths Science in UCC.0 
peterpoker wrote: »do ya need a science to do a mathematics course?
Yeah, what JayP says is pretty much true. My course (Maths Science in UCD) has Physics as part of it, but they run an introduction to Mechanics course in the first semester for students who haven't done it before.
Just be aware that there may be some physics involved in college, check the course outline.0 
When I did maths in Trinity, you had to do a mechanics/mathematical physics course (141) in 1st year. Not strictly a science as no labs. But last time I checked the syllabus (maybe a year ago), it was optional  people had to pick two out of: Mechanics (141), Probability & Statistics and a Computing course (can't remember title).
I was glad I had done App. Maths for Leaving Cert before I did the mechanics/mathematical physics course. Some managed who had done Physics but not App. Maths. I think the people who did neither were a bit (or more!) lost.0 
I'd think about a UK university then. Again, Cambridge is tops. Oxford and Imperial come close though. Of course, there are millions of other possibilities too. I don't know a whole lot about the various programs in Ireland, sone of the other lads will be able to tell you.
Again, it really depends what area you're interested in.
Oxford take their masters programs very seriously, but at the moment I would say that they don't come close to Cambridge in terms of facilities and range of options offered. Part III really is the ultimate in maths courses in Europe as far as I'm concerned. Oxford are doing some expansion of their maths dept and hopefully it will offer a better option to undergrads and masters students in a few years.0 
When I did maths in Trinity, you had to do a mechanics/mathematical physics course (141) in 1st year. Not strictly a science as no labs. But last time I checked the syllabus (maybe a year ago), it was optional  people had to pick two out of: Mechanics (141), Probability & Statistics and a Computing course (can't remember title).
I was glad I had done App. Maths for Leaving Cert before I did the mechanics/mathematical physics course. Some managed who had done Physics but not App. Maths. I think the people who did neither were a bit (or more!) lost.
I scrapped a pass and never went near the subject again.0 
Din Taylor wrote: »The mechanics course was difficult but a joke to pass when I did it. Assignments counted for 25% of it and a PhD student used to do the solutions every week on the board. Half of the exam was repeated assignment questions.
I scrapped a pass and never went near the subject again.0 
Hi,
Could anybody tell me possible doors a masters in maths would open, compared to having a degree in the subject. Jobs and so on.
Regards.0 
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Hi,
I have a science related degree however I love maths and was wondering if I would have to go back and do a degree in maths in order to get into the area or does anyone know if there are any postgrad conversion courses? There seems to be a one year h.dip. in maths studies/sciences in ucd however I'm not sure if a degree in maths would be required. There was just one module of maths and stats in 1st year of my degree..got an a2 hons LC..would like to do maths but not sure if could do or afford another 4 year degree!!0 
I guess it depends what you mean by "do maths". If you wanted to teach it, I'm sure there are ways of doing that (though you might be better off asking in teaching and lecturing).
If you wanted to do real research, things might be a bit harder. How technical was your degree? I know people who have moved from business into machine learning (essentially applied stats), but if you want to do real research in pure maths you realistically need a maths BSc at least.
The options available to you depend heavily on your background. It's not unknown for an electrical engineer or an economist to move into maths, but the tendency is for people to move from more "pure" fields to more applied ones, and not the other way around.
If you really didn't want to go back to do a four year degree, you could think about doing an open university course, followed by a Master's if you're still hungry for more.0 
Hi,
I have a science related degree however I love maths and was wondering if I would have to go back and do a degree in maths in order to get into the area or does anyone know if there are any postgrad conversion courses? There seems to be a one year h.dip. in maths studies/sciences in ucd however I'm not sure if a degree in maths would be required. There was just one module of maths and stats in 1st year of my degree..got an a2 hons LC..would like to do maths but not sure if could do or afford another 4 year degree!!0 
Hey guys, thanks a million that was really helpful.
Looked up the courses in maynooth and open university and they both gave me alot to think about! Thanks again, will let ye know if I make any progress0 
I have been studying partime over the past towards getting a good science degree. Started off with mathematical science but was only able to complete one semester due to work Location.
Last year I did applied medical science.It was tough but got through it.
I was recently made redundant from my banking Job and have applied to go back to college fulltime to concentrate on pure maths as a degree.
Am now undecided on whether to do this or stick with medical science partime. All I want is a good scince degree that gives me ths best career prospects in the future,given the current economic situation.
Have read some many blogs regarding mathematics and lot of them have been negative with regards how tough the subject is. Am a firm believer if you work hard at anything you can achieve it.
I would like to get some good advice and guidance from people .
Thank You.0 
This post has been deleted.0

I'm in 6th Year at the moment and i'm pretty sure i want to go on to study maths in university. I'm fairly handy with honours maths, and provided the paper isn't horrible, should get an A in the LC. I find honours maths FAR easier than applied maths, and am wondering if this should have a bearing on which degree i choose?
Also, is the "applied maths" that you study in university totally different to the LC subject??
I live in limerick, and don't think moving away is an option!
Has anyone any experience in the Mathematical Sciences or Maths and Physics courses in UL?
Any help would be much appreciated0 
smileykiely wrote: »I'm in 6th Year at the moment and i'm pretty sure i want to go on to study maths in university. I'm fairly handy with honours maths, and provided the paper isn't horrible, should get an A in the LC. I find honours maths FAR easier than applied maths, and am wondering if this should have a bearing on which degree i choose?
Also, is the "applied maths" that you study in university totally different to the LC subject??
I live in limerick, and don't think moving away is an option!
Has anyone any experience in the Mathematical Sciences or Maths and Physics courses in UL?
Any help would be much appreciated
ETA: In the DATs, I didn't have a high mechanical reasoning score which I think may have affected my ability in mechanics/mathematical physics courses. But that isn't relevant for business maths, computing, etc. A lot of courses let you drop mathematical physics after first year.0 
I'm not familiar with the UL courses. But L. Cert Applied Maths is really a mathematical physics or mechanics course. Maths can be applied in various ways. Not everyone in TCD maths was good at the mathematical physics course in first year (even though they were good in other areas). You could look up the syllabus for any course you're interested in and see what the individual courses involve. Perhaps a physics course wouldn't be so suitable for you if you find honours maths far easier than applied maths?????
ETA: In the DATs, I didn't have a high mechanical reasoning score which I think may have affected my ability in mechanics/mathematical physics courses. But that isn't relevant for business maths, computing, etc. A lot of courses let you drop mathematical physics after first year.
Thanks a million kangaroo! I think you're probably right, i don't fancy doing a physics course mainly because i've been doing it for three years with a teacher who's possibly the most confusing person in the world. I've looked at the course overview for mathematical sciences and it seems fairly broad, don't think it says anything about mathematical physics, but i could just be stupid
http://www.ul.ie/courses/LM060.shtml0 
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Theoretical mechanics in second year. I'd me more worried that they don't list the third and fourth year modules.
The mechanics you cover won't be much harder than what you did at leaving cert, and besides, you'll develop as a mathematician over time. There's a weird phenomenon in undergrad maths  a subject which feels difficult one year will feel trivial a couple of years after. This may happen to you with Mechanics.0
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