courses title



4-year graduation plan | 5-year graduation plan | program's printable version

The Major

Mathematicians today are engaged in a wide variety of activities. Research mathematicians create new theories and techniques. Applied mathematicians use that theory and mathematical modeling to solve problems in economics, science, medicine, engineering, and management. Teachers of mathematics develop new ways to teach mathematical concepts to children and adults.

University-level mathematics involves more than algorithms and computational techniques. Mathematics majors also learn to construct proofs and how to approach a real life problem from a mathematical point of view.



Math majors tend to be highly satisfied with the jobs they get after college. The pay is generally good and the work is usually strongly related to mathematics. The best five jobs listed in a recent Jobs Rated Almanac - software engineer, actuary, computer systems analyst, computer programmer, and mathematician - all require a very strong background in mathematics. In fact, almost every one of the top fifty jobs involves a significant amount of mathematical reasoning and knowledge.

The Bachelor of Science in mathematics is designed for students who (a) wish to pursue occupational careers involving applied mathematics; or (b) wish to prepare for graduate work in applied mathematics.

For more information on the program, see the 2002-2004 University Catalog.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science Degree

It is assumed that the student has a facility in mathematics normally gained by recent completion of four years of high school mathematics through trigonometry and "Mathematical Analysis." Because of the variation in curriculum at the high school level it is necessary to obtain a satisfactory score on the Mathematics Placement Test to enter the first course in the program. Without a satisfactory score a student may have to complete additional courses.

It may be possible for a student wishing to emphasize mathematical applications in a field outside the natural sciences to replace the physics requirement in the Lower Division Core by course work involving significant mathematical applications in that field. This may only be done with the approval of an applied mathematics advisor and the department chair.

Residency Requirement

In addition to University residence requirements for a bachelor's degree, the student must complete a minimum of 18 units of upper division mathematics in residence at Cal State Northridge with the approval of a mathematics advisor.

Course Requirement

The student must complete the following course requirements and must have at least a 2.0 grade point average for all upper division units required in the major.

Lower Division Required Courses (31-32 Units)

MATH 150A Mathematical Analysis I (5)

MATH 150B Mathematical Analysis II (5)

MATH 150AL OR 150BL Calculus Computer Lab (1)

MATH 250 Mathematical Analysis III (3)

MATH 262 Introduction to Linear Algebra (3)

COMP 106/106L Computing in Engineering and Science (3)
110/110L Introduction to Algorithms and Programming (4)

PHYS 220A Mechanics (3)

PHYS 220AL Mechanics Laboratory (1)

PHYS 220B Electricity and Magnetism (3)

PHYS 220BL Electricity and Magnetism Laboratory (1)

PHIL 230 Symbolic Logic I (3)

Upper Division Required Courses (18 Units)

MATH 320 Foundations of Higher Math (3)

MATH 340 Introductory Probability (3)

MATH 350 Advanced Calculus I (3)

MATH 351 Differential Equations (3)

MATH 380 Introduction to Applied Math (3)

MATH 462 Advanced Linear Algebra (3)

MATH 480 Partial Differential Equations (3)

MATH 481A Numerical Analysis (3)

MATH 483 Mathematical Modeling (3)

Upper Division Electives (9 units)

Upper division math courses (excluding Math 310, 310L, 311, 312, 331, 391, and 490) and approved courses in other departments, with at least three (3) units in mathematics.

Recommended courses from other departments listed here as they are listed in the catalog:

CHEM 351, 352
AM 410,509
EE 320, 350, 351, 422, 470
ME 470, 390, 470
PHYS 301, 311, 370, 372, 431, 489

NOTE: Some of these courses have prerequisites in the departments concerned. The student is responsible for planning his/her schedule to meet those prerequisites when necessary.

Total Units in Option I (67-68 Units)

General Education (37 Units)

Subsection A.2, Critical Reasoning, is satisfied by PHIL 230.

Subsection A.3, Mathematics, is satisfied by Math 150A.

Section B, Natural Sciences, is partially satisfied by the lower division Physics courses required in the major.

Section E, Applied Arts and Sciences, is satisfied by either Comp 110/110L or Comp 106/106L.

Title 5 (6 Units)

Additional Units (9-10 Units)

Total Units Required for the BS Degree: 120