Math Courses at Binghamton University
At Binghamton University, students can pursue a BA or BS in Mathematical Sciences with the option to concentrate in Actuarial Sciences in either degree. The department also offers 4+1 accelerated degrees that allow students to receive both their bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in just five years. Graduates of a Mathematical Sciences can go into a variety of careers such as data analyst, software development, scientific research, and education (teaching). With an actuarial science track, students can also find employment with many careers in business such as at an investment bank or consulting firm. Fun fact: Tom Secunda, one of the original four founders of Bloomberg L.P., is one of the most prominent alumni who majored in Mathematics at Binghamton!
1. MATH 223 - Introduction to Calculus
As an introductory requirement, MATH 223 is typically a course students take in their first year as a foundational class, as it covers the basics of precalculus needed for mathematical and practical understanding. In order to take MATH 223, students must pass the Precalculus Screening Test.
This 2-credit introductory course gears students up for MATH 224 Differential Calculus. Major topics students can expect in this course are limits, rates of change, definition of derivative, and Riemann sum. Over five different professors teach 9 sections of this course, including Mathew Wolak, Richard Behr, and Thomas Kilcoyne.
2. MATH 224/225 - Differential Calculus and Integral Calculus
MATH 224 and MATH 225 are both 2-credit courses that create Binghamton’s 4-credit Calculus I offering. Some subjects in differential calculus that this course covers are limits, continuity, and differentiation. After taking this course for half a semester, students advance to MATH 225 in the next semester, where topics in integral calculus involve optimization and integration.
Many professors teach both MATH 224 and MATH 225 such as Hari Asokan, Carlinda Azevedo, and Wenshu Dai. Students seeking help in this course can find it at the Math Help Room, which is staffed by professors who teach the course and receive help from all instructors who teach the course, and not just their own. In Calculus I, Basic Skills Tests make up 15% of the final grad. The Basic Skills tests is a basic computational skill that is fundamental for more advanced classes with MATH 224 and MATH 225 as a prerequisite.
3. MATH 226/227 - Integration Tech & Application and Infinite Series
MATH 226 and MATH 227 are two classes that are taken as a corequisite that can account for Calculus II. A prerequisite for the class is a grade of a C- or above in Math 225. The first part of the course involves topics such as transcendental & inverse functions and L’Hospital’s Rule. In the second part of the course, sequences and series like power series and Taylor series are the primary focus.
The two primary professors who coordinate the class are L. William Kazmierczak and Carlos Vega. This class is a popular class in the department, as it is one of the required calculus classes for math majors and a potential advanced finance elective for students in the School of Management.
4. MATH 330 - Number Systems
This course is one of the most important courses for a math major. Covering topics like real numbers, induction and recursion, and equivalence relations, MATH 330 provides much of the needed knowledge in logical reasoning and mathematical proofs. As a result, much more writing is expected and proper English in proofs are key to success in this class!
Like many of the introductory courses, students get a variety of professors to choose from when taking MATH 330, such as professors Walter Carlip, Michael Fochler, and Paul Loya. This course is an essential for math majors and a great overview for non-majors with a serious interest in advanced math.
5. MATH 375 - Complex Variables
After completing the requirements for Number Systems and Calculus I, II, and III, math students can take complex variables as an analytical class in their curriculum. The class is a continuation and expansion on calculus topics and digs into Cauchy’s integral theorem and more power series.
Carlos Vega teaches this course in the Spring semester. Many of the concepts in the course provide context for the historical development of differential geometry. Topics in complex variables are rich and can have many practical applications.
6. MATH 148 - Elementary Statistics for Biologist
The Math Department offers a basic statistics course tailored for students majoring in biology. Although knowledge of calculus is not assumed for MATH 148, important concepts like sampling, binomial distribution, and tests of statistical hypotheses are covered to equip biology students for data analysis.
Professor Michael Fochler teaches this course in a large lecture along with separate discussion sections. Coursework in MATH 148 prepares students for careers biology and research. Though the course does not have a specific focus on medicine and biology, the concepts are the basic statistics.
7. MATH 346 - Introduction to Financial Mathematics
Binghamton’s math department has many courses that cover the main topics of actuarial exams. MATH 346 is a good introduction of subjects covered in Exam FM such as amortization, portfolio insurance, and derivative markets.
Two sections of this course are taught by Christopher Haines and David Renfrew. Although the course seems tough with 3 midterms contributing to 45% of the grade, two weekly open-note quizzes help prepare you well for the exams!
8. MATH 404 - Advanced Linear Algebra
Linear Algebra is a requirement for all math majors, but those wanting to take a further dive into the topic can take MATH 404. After reviewing some basic linear algebra, the course will cover a variety of topics including modules, normal forms of linear transformation, and quadratic forms.
This course is only offered in the Spring and is taught by Alex Feingold. As a prerequisite, students need to have grades of a C- and above in MATH304 and MATH 330. Knowledge of linear algebra is a good basis for careers in engineering.
9. MATH 449 - Actuarial Exam P Preparation
For students interested in taking the actuarial Exam P, this class is a great way to prepare! Major topics in the exam that have been explored in the BS and BA in Mathematics such as probability and calculus are the highlights of this course.
Professor Hanson teaches this course in the Spring only. This class does not count for any of the degrees in math, but is a good, practical way to prepare any students interested in a career in actuarial science. It is recommended that students take this course after MATH 447.
10. MATH 463 - Differential Geometry
MATH 463 in Differential Geometry is an upper level math course that math majors can take to learn more about topology and geometry of space. Specific topics that are covered in this course include Rham cohomology and the Gauss-Bonnet theorem. Students learn how to calculate “voids” in the universe through the theories and concepts covered in MATH 463.
Prerequisites for this course include MATH 304 and MATH 330. Paul Loya teaches one section of Differential Geometry in the Spring semester. The lecture does not require any textbooks and is 100% lecture-based. Students can receive extra credit by submitting organized notes they have for every class.