Mathematics, B.A. (Altoona)

Program Code: MTAAL_BA

Entrance to Major

In order to be eligible for entrance to the Mathematics major, a student must have:

  1. attained at least a 2.00 cumulative grade-point average; and
  2. completed MATH 140 and MATH 141 and earned a grade of C or better in each of these courses.

Degree Requirements

For the Bachelor of Arts degree in Mathematics, a minimum of 120 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 0-1
Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements 24
Requirements for the Major 56

6 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes 6 credits of General Education GQ courses.

3 of the 24 credits for Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements are included in the Requirements for the Major, General Education, or Electives and 0-12 credits are included in Electives if foreign language proficiency is demonstrated by examination.

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Knowledge Domains

  • Arts (GA): 6 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 6 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 6 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits

Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)

  • Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement    

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

B.A. Degree Requirements

Foreign Language (0-12 credits): Student must attain 12th credit level of proficiency in one foreign language. See the Placement Policy for Penn State Foreign Language Courses.

B.A. Fields (9 credits): Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Arts, Foreign Languages, Natural Sciences, Quantification (may not be taken in the area of the student's primary major; foreign language credits in this category must be in a second foreign language or beyond the 12th credit level of proficiency in the first language)

Other Cultures (0-3 credits): Select 3 credits from approved list. Students may count courses in this category in order to meet other major, minor, elective, or General Education requirements, except for the General Education US/IL requirement.​

Requirements for the Major

To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn a grade of C or better in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Prescribed Courses
STAT 200Elementary Statistics Keystone/General Education Course4
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
MATH 140Calculus With Analytic Geometry I Keystone/General Education Course4
MATH 141Calculus with Analytic Geometry II Keystone/General Education Course4
MATH 220Matrices Keystone/General Education Course2-3
MATH 230Calculus and Vector Analysis4
MATH 311WConcepts of Discrete Mathematics3-4
MATH 312Concepts of Real Analysis3
MATH 403Classical Analysis I3
Additional Courses
Select one of the following:3
Introduction to Programming Keystone/General Education Course
Introduction to Programming Techniques Keystone/General Education Course
Programming for Engineers with C++ Keystone/General Education Course
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
MATH 250Ordinary Differential Equations3-4
or MATH 251 Ordinary and Partial Differential Equations
MATH 435Basic Abstract Algebra3
or MATH 436 Linear Algebra
Select 3 credits of the following:3
Ordinary Differential Equations
Fourier Series and Partial Differential Equations
Qualitative Theory of Differential Equations
Theoretical Mechanics
Complex Analysis
Select 6 credits of 400-level MATH courses 16
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Select 8-11 credits from department list8-11

Program Learning Objectives

  1. Students should be able to demonstrate a strong understanding of the core concepts of differential and integral calculus, elementary linear algebra, and differential equations, and to use these concepts to describe physical problems mathematically.
  2. Students should develop an understanding of mathematical proof techniques, and demonstrate skill in the effective communication of mathematical concepts and proofs, especially in written form.
  3. Students should demonstrate an understanding of advanced mathematical concepts and their use to solve problems both from within mathematics and from applied areas.
  4. Graduating students should be prepared to cope with the mathematical challenges they meet in continuing their mathematical education or at the workplace.

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

READ SENATE POLICY 32-00: ADVISING POLICY

Altoona

Michael D. Weiner
Associate Professor of Mathematics
Hawthorn Building 115
3000 Ivyside Park
Altoona, PA 16601
814-949-5558
mdw8@psu.edu

University Park

Undergraduate Mathematics Office
Academic Advising

104 McAllister Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-865-7528
undergrad@math.psu.edu

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2020-21 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition (Note: the archive only contain suggested academic plans beginning with the 2018-19 edition of the Undergraduate Bulletin).

Mathematics, B.A. at Altoona Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
MATH 140*#4MATH 141*#4
General Education Course3General Education Course3
World Language Course Level 14World Language Course Level 24
PSU 31ENGL 15, 30H, or ESL 153
STAT 2004General Education Course (GHW)1.5
 16 15.5
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
MATH 2202MATH 250 or 2513 or 4
MATH 2304MATH 311W*3
World Language Course Level 34CMPSC 121 or 2013
General Education Course3CAS 1003
General Education Course3General Education (GHW)1.5
 16 13.5-14.5
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
MATH 312*3MATH 403*3
MATH 435 or 436*3Mathematics 400-level Course*3
Supporting Course3 or 4Supporting Course3 or 4
Other Cultures Course (IL)3ENGL 202C3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
 15-16 15-16
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
Mathematics 400-level Course*3Mathematics 400-level Course*3
Other Cultures Course (IL)3Supporting Course3 or 4
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
 15 15-16
Total Credits 121-125

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.

Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.

Bachelor of Arts Requirements:

Bachelor of Arts students must take 9 credits in Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Fields (Humanities; Social and Behavioral Sciences; Arts; World Languages [2nd language or beyond the 12th credit level of proficiency in the 1st]; Natural Sciences; Quantification). The B.A. Fields courses may not be taken in the area of the student’s primary major. See your adviser and the Degree Requirements section of this Bulletin.

Bachelor of Arts students must take 3 credits in Other Cultures.
See your adviser and the full list of courses approved as Other Cultures courses.

Career Paths

Students with an undergraduate degree in mathematics pursue graduate study or careers in business and industry.

Careers

Students with an undergraduate degree in mathematics pursue careers in the fields of science and technology, business and consulting, research and industry, and teaching.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT POTENTIAL CAREER OPTIONS FOR GRADUATES OF THE MATHEMATICS PROGRAM

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

Students with an undergraduate degree in mathematics pursue graduate study in a variety of different fields such as mathematics, statistics, economics, finance, computer science, or operations research.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT OPPORTUNITIES FOR GRADUATE STUDIES

Professional Resources

Contact

Altoona

DIVISION OF MATHEMATICS AND NATURAL SCIENCES
Hawthorn Building 115
3000 Ivyside Park
Altoona, PA 16601
814-949-5558
mdw8@psu.edu

http://altoona.psu.edu/academics/bachelors-degrees/mathematics/request-information

University Park

DEPARTMENT OF MATHEMATICS
104 McAllister Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-865-7528
undergrad@math.psu.edu

http://math.psu.edu/