Mathematics

Developing keen analytical skills to solve problems

Mathematics is everywhere in our world — in the design of a building, the shape of a tree, the decisions made by large corporations, the contours of a soda can, and your own checkbook. As a Mathematics major at Elon, you will learn the problem-solving, reasoning, and numerical skills that make mathematicians vital in this age of information technology. Mathematician continues in 2012 to be listed among the top ten best jobs by CareerCast.com.

Elon Mathematics Program

Our program offers several majors to meet the needs of all kinds of students:

  • Our Bachelor of Arts degree has concentrations in applied mathematics, pure mathematics, and in teacher licensure for students planning to work in industry, pursue graduate study, or teach at the secondary level. The A.B. degree is structured to work well as a double major with related programs.
  • We offer Bachelor of Science degrees in mathematics and mathematics with teacher licensure, as well as a separate degree in applied mathematics.

Mathematics graduates are well suited for many postgraduate options, including an advanced degree in either mathematics or a related field, such as computer science, biometry, information science, statistics, or operations research. A minor in mathematics strengthens many majors.

Elon’s mathematics faculty use the latest technology combined with traditional and experiential learning techniques to give you a well-rounded education, and they are known for their excellence in teaching and their focus on student success. They are also supportive mentors who will inspire you to learn and help you tackle challenging assignments. You will gain experience with the latest high-tech tools and learn to master a variety of software packages during class, including Excel, Fathom, LaTeX, Geometer’s Sketchpad, and Mathematica.

“When you declare a major in math at Elon, you instantly join the department's family culture. A professor isn't just your teacher for a class; they are your friend. They've had you for several classes, have watched you grow as a mathematician, and continually challenge you to improve. Majors never left the Math floor immediately after class; we would always hang around and continue talking with the professors.”

Jenn Batchelor ’10

Research opportunities

Elon is renowned for its active, experiential approach to learning. At the heart of that philosophy is research. As a mathematics major, you will be encouraged to conduct original research on your own and with faculty members who pride themselves on being accessible to students. Many majors participate in a capstone seminar that includes a research project. Students prepare formal papers based on their research and present them to an audience of peers.

Students also present research findings at Elon’s annual Spring Undergraduate Research Forum (SURF). For many years, students have been presenters at the Mathematical Association of America sectional meetings, MathFest, the UNC-G Regional Mathematical and Statistics Conference, the Nebraska Conference for Women, and the Joint Mathematics Meetings. In 2010, an Elon student won the award for best undergraduate presentation at the MAA Southeastern Sectional meeting, which was held at Elon. In addition to presenting, student research projects have been published in the Rose-Hulman Undergraduate Research Journal of Mathematics, the Pi Mu Epsilon Journal, and the International Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics.

Learning Beyond the Classroom

Elon’s faculty encourage students to participate in learning activities outside the classroom, including student chapters of the Mathematical Association of America and the North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCCTM) as well as the national mathematics honor society, Pi Mu Epsilon.

Fellows program

Exceptional high school students planning to major in mathematics could qualify to become Honors Fellows, Teaching Fellows, or Elon College Fellows, a challenging program in the College of Arts and Sciences. Elon’s Fellows programs offer scholarships, special course offerings, study abroad grants, and much more. View the Elon Fellows programs Website for more information.

After graduation

Sharp problem-solving skills make mathematics majors attractive to potential employers. Career choices for graduates include law school, teaching, government work, actuary or insurance work, quality control or statistics, and work in the financial or retail fields. In almost any field that requires problem solving and analytical reasoning, especially when there is a quantitative element to the work, mathematics majors are considered highly valuable.

Graduate school is required for students interested in teaching at the college level and is recommended for anyone pursuing specialties in mathematics. Elon’s recent graduating mathematics majors have enrolled in graduate programs at the following institutions:

  • College of William and Mary
  • Duke University
  • North Carolina State University
  • The Ohio State University
  • University of Illinois
  • University of Maryland
  • University of South Carolina
  • University of Texas at Houston
  • Wake Forest University