Computational Studies Minor to Debut

Boston College will offer a new minor in scientific computation this fall, under an interdisciplinary program that will complement studies in the natural and social sciences.

Students selecting the minor will be exposed to a wide range of computational techniques of practical value in solving empirical and modeling problems in physics, chemistry, mathematics, economics and finance.

The minor will require six courses: two in math; one in scientific programming; one in numerical methods and scientific computation; one elective course from an approved list; and a capstone course in advanced scientific computation. Attendance at a senior seminar will also be required.

"A recent National Institutes of Health report on biomedical research cites an alarming gap between the need for computation in biology and the skills and resources available to meet that need," said Assoc. Prof. Christopher Baum (Economics), who will direct the minor with Asst. Prof. Jan Engelbrecht (Physics).

"That gap is just as relevant in economics, finance and the other physical sciences," Baum added. "In establishing an interdisciplinary minor in scientific computation within A&S, Boston College is taking the innovative stance that these tools should be provided to undergraduates and not reserved for graduate training."

-Mark Sullivan

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