Mathematics comes from the Greek word mathema, which means knowledge, study, or learning. If that sounds broad, it’s because it’s indicative of a field that lies at the base of practically everything our modern society is built upon. Mathematics developed the theory and language which powers the device upon which you’re reading this article. It provided the geometry which built the structures we live in. It put people on the moon.
Today’s mathematicians are capable of no less than their forebears. Modern mathematics is essential to the innovations driving the future: AI, machine learning, personalized medicine, and quantum computing all rely upon the self-evident proofs of mathematics. It drives the foundations of data science and predictive analytics which can revolutionize the way we see, interpret, and act within the world. The future is built on math.
A mathematics background prepares you for work in practically every fast-growing field, with major applications in data science, computer programming, biology, economics, and statistics. And, with the growth and maturity of online education, it’s never been easier to get started. With a strong basis in theory and logic, mathematics is perfectly suited to online learning. It’s now possible to get a mathematics degree from a top-ranked program and learn from world-renowned faculty from anywhere in the world.
Dr. Mansoor Haider is a professor of mathematics at North Carolina State University, where he is also a professor in the biomathematics graduate program. He received his PhD in mathematical sciences from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, then joined Duke University as a postdoctoral research associate.
Currently, Dr. Haider also serves as an associate director at the Statistical & Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute (SAMSI) in Research Triangle Park. Dr. Haider’s research is primarily focused on mathematical applications in the life sciences, with a particular interest in mathematical modeling of soft biological tissues. In the educational sphere, he takes a strong role in shaping the best practices of graduate training in mathematical science, distance learning, and the use of tech in the classroom. In 2013, Dr. Haider won the Gertrude M. Cox Award for Excellence in Teaching & Learning with Technology.
Dr. Ayelet Lindenstrauss is a professor of mathematics at Indiana University, where she also serves as director of undergraduate studies for mathematics. She received her PhD in mathematics from Princeton University. Her primary research interests include algebraic topology, algebraic K-theory, and cyclic homology.
Dr. Lindenstrauss’s academic research has been widely published, and mathematical brilliance runs in her family: she’s had papers listed in Mathematical Reviews, and so have her brother, mother, and father.
Dr. Ka-Kit Tung is a professor of applied mathematics at the University of Washington, where he is also an adjunct lecturer in the department of atmospheric sciences. He earned his PhD in applied mathematics at Harvard University. Prior to joining the faculty at the University of Washington, he worked as an associate professor of applied mathematics at MIT.
Dr. Tung joined the University of Washington faculty as a professor in 1998, going on to serve as the department chair for applied mathematics from 1993 to 2007. His primary research focus is climate change. In addition to his prestigious mathematics background, Dr. Tung is also a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society, and of the Royal Meteorological Society.
Indiana University (Bachelor of Science)
IU Online offers a BS in mathematics that places a strong emphasis on the fundamentals of math: calculus, linear algebra, modern algebra, real analysis, and mathematical modeling. Electives allow students to add a specialization in either financial mathematics or pure mathematics. All online courses are taught by the same faculty as the on-campus courses.
In addition to the core curriculum, online students will gain access to personalized onboarding, success coaching, career services, and mentorship. The program consists of 120 credits and takes approximately four years to complete.
University of Washington (Master of Science)
UW’s online MS in applied mathematics is ranked in the top five, nationally, by the National Research Council. The program’s interdisciplinary approach covers the mathematical models that undergird the physical, engineering, and biological sciences.
The curriculum includes four core courses: vector calculus and complex variables; an introduction to dynamical systems and chaos; methods for partial differential equations; and either scientific computing or applied linear algebra. In addition to electives inside applied mathematics, students are able to take online elective courses outside the department. In total, the program consists of 36 to 42 credits and takes between one and three years to complete.
North Carolina State University (Certificate)
NC State University offers a graduate certificate in mathematics for practicing professionals who want to stay up-to-date with advances in the field. While not a degree program in and of itself, the certificate program can act as a bridge to graduate study, and coursework from the certificate program can transfer over to other graduate programs.
The certificate’s curriculum is tailored to each individual student. While there is no specific course list, students may fill out their classes with NC State mathematics courses. The program consists of 12 credits and may be completed entirely online.
You don’t need to enroll in a degree program to get a start on boosting your mathematics skills. With compartmentalized sessions available online, you can drop in and up-skill easily, cheaply, and flexibly. These DIY options allow you to brush up on an individual topic, or to tailor your learning with different modules.
Founded in 2012 by two Stanford computer science professors, Coursera has a vision of providing anyone, anywhere, with access to the world’s best education. Coursera users have maximum flexibility to decide their learning path, with hundreds of options as standalone courses, curated specializations, packaged certificates, and full-on degrees.
Mathematics, in particular, is a ripe subject area on Coursera, with hundreds of options available, and many of the offerings are provided by heavy-hitting partners such as IBM, Duke, and Stanford.
Founded by Harvard and MIT, edX is a global nonprofit that’s home to more than 20 million learners. Here, students can piece together the education they want at the pace they need through edX’s stackable learning options. Those looking to upskill in math can choose practically any area of study: from probability to calculus to data science to finite element modeling.
Whether enrolling in a one-off class or a MicroMasters program, edX students can get top-quality content at extremely affordable prices. EdX has over 120 institutional partners, including MIT, Harvard, Microsoft, and UC Berkeley.