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Math Courses at University of Waterloo

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Katelyn Heuer

The University of Waterloo is a public research university that is located in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. Notable alumni of UW include Peter Szulczewski, the CEO of, Rupi Kaur, Kevin O'Leary from Shark Tank, David Visentin from HGTV, and more! With such successful graduates, you know that UW must provide its students with the best education possible. This includes a wide variety of math classes. Keep reading this post to learn more about some of the math classes offered at University of Waterloo.

1. MATH 106 - Applied Linear Algebra 1

Linear algebra equations and graphs

In Applied Linear Algebra I, students will learn about systems of linear equations, matrix algebra, determinations, vector spaces, and their applications. While the professor who teaches this class often changes, on previous years, it has been taught by Professors Jennifer McKinnon, Steve Gindi, and Zachary Cramer, all of whom have great reviews! The only downside to MATH 106 is that it's not open to computer science students.

2. MATH 116 - Calculus I for Engineering

A woman writing an equation on a blackboard

MATH 116 is like normal calculus with a little extra challenge for the engineering students! Even though it only lasts a semester, the course covers a number of topics, including exponential, logarithmic, trigonometric functions, function operations, trigonometric identities, inverse functions, derivatives, the Mean Value Theorem, L'Hopital's rule, integrals, Riemann definite integrals, and much more. In the past, this class has been taught by Professors Florian Girelli, Jozsef Vass, Anne-Marie Allison, and Bruce Richmond.

3. MATH 119 - Calculus 2 for Engineering

students posing in front of water loo engineering sign

If you liked MATH 116 and are looking for a new challenge, consider taking MATH 119: Calculus 2 for Engineering. This course, taught by Professors Zoran Miskovic, David Harmworth, Clinton Loo, and Eddie Dupont, picks up where MATH 116 left off and allows students to continue crafting their calculus skills. Some of the topics covered include Taylor polynomials, Newton's method, Taylor series, Taylor's Remainder Theorem, geometric series, convergence tests, power series, partial derivatives, linear approximation, optimization, Lagrange multipliers, and much, much more.

4. MATH 207 - Calculus 3

students writing vector equations on the board

Unlike the previous calculus classes, this one isn't specifically for engineers and is open to all UW students. However, like the other previous calculus classes, this one picks up where Calculus 2 left off. Taught by Kai-Cheong Chan and Kristopher Rowe, students will learn about multivariable functions, partial derivatives, gradients, optimization, polar coordinates, multiple integrals, surface integrals, and an introduction to Fourier series.

5. MATH 228 - Differential Equations for Physics and Chemistry

Chemistry and physics tools

Like the title implies, this course is only open to physics and chemistry students. Students taking this class will likely be taught by Xinzhi Liu, Andrew Beltoas, Kirsten Morris, Christopher Bauch, or Conrad Hewitt. In this class students will learn about first and second order equations, series solutions, special functions, Laplace transforms, and more. Because it's only for physics and chemistry students, the applications of these topics in the physics and chemistry fields and heavily emphasized.

6. MATH 229 - Introduction to Combinatorics

Pascal's triangle, used in combinatorics

This course, taught by Professor Aidan Roy, focuses on two main topics: introduction to graph theory and introduction to combinatorial analysis. In the introduction to graph theory portion, students will learn about colorings, connectivity, Eulerian tours, and planarity. In the introduction to combinatorial analysis portion, students will learn about elementary counting, generating series, and binary strings.

7. MATH 247 - Calculus 3 (Advanced Level)

a Waterloo professor teaching functions on the board

Although Calculus 3 is already on this list of math courses, MATH 247 isn't the same as MATH 207. This class, taught by Alexandry Nica, Kathryn Hare, Laurent Marcoux, Kirstin Morris, and Brian Forrest is designed for honors math students which means that more topics are covered in the same amount of time and students are challenged more. Some of these many topics include closed and open sets, connectivity, uniform continuity, partial differentiability, the chain rule, Taylor polynomials, Riemann integration, Fubini's theorem, the open mapping theorem, the inverse function theorem, the implicit function theorem, and much more.

8. MATH 135 - Algebra for Honors Mathematics

A basic algebra equation

This class, taught by Ian Vanderburgh, Wentang Kuo, Steve Furino, and Yu-Ru Liu, is also meant for honors math students. MATH 135 attempts to introduce students to the language of math and proof techniques by teaching them about basic algebraic systems. More specifically, students will learn about integers, integers modulo n, rational numbers, real numbers, complex numbers, and polynomials.

9. MATH 235 - Linear Algebra 2 for Honours Mathematics

A linear algebra graph

MATH 235 is open to all honors math students and math physics students. In previous years, this course has been taught by Henry Wolkowicz, Dan Wolczuk, Ian Vanderburgh, and Uldis Celmins. Some of the specific topics taught in this course include orthogonal and unitary matrices, orthogonal projections, Gram-Schmidt procedures, best approximations, least-squares, inner products, orthogonal diagonalization, singular value decomposition, and their applications.

10. MATH 227 - Calculus 3 for Honors Physics

Words that are relevant or often used in calculus

Are you surprised to see another version of Calculus 3 on this list? This version of Calculus 3 differs from the other two in that it's only open to science students in honors plans; this allows students to learn math that is more relevant to STEM fields. While some topics, like the chain rule, optimizations, and Lagrange multipliers are also taught in the other Calculus 3 classes, other topics, like vector fields, divergence, curl, Green's Theorem, Stokes' Theorem, Gauss' Theorem, and more are taught only in this version of the course.

With these math classes, you'll be prepared for whatever your future academics and career have in store for you! Keep this post in mind as you think about courses you might take at University of Waterloo!


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