Majors and Minors in Math
Options for Mathematics Majors
The Mathematics department offers two undergraduate degree programs leading to the Bachelor of Science and to the Bachelor of Arts.
Students interested in graduate study in mathematics, or in the importance of mathematics in the sciences, should pursue the B.S. For others, such as those who also wish to pursue study in a nonquantitative area or who are preparing to teach mathematics at the precollegiate level, the B.A. will be more appropriate.
Please direct any questions about the major in Mathematics to the Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs.
The Bachelor of Arts program in Mathematics is designed to provide a solid foundation in the main areas of mathematics and mathematical applications. Course work is offered in preparation for careers in the actuarial profession, applied areas of government and industry, and education. Students who succeed in the program make excellent candidates for law school and other professional schools.
The Mathematics major requires completion of at least 33 credits, depending upon the student's preparation in Calculus prior to entering Boston College.
Preparation (if necessary)  MATH 1102 Calculus I (Math and Science Majors), or its equivalent (e.g., four or higher on the Calculus AP exam) MATH 1103 Calculus II (Math and Science Majors), or MATH 1105 Calculus IIAP (Math and Science Majors), or an equivalent (e.g., five on the Calculus BC AP exam). 
Required Courses  MATH 2202 Multivariable Calculus or MATH 2203 Multivariable Calculus (Honors) MATH 2210 Linear Algebra or MATH 2211 Linear Algebra (Honors) MATH 2216 Introduction to Abstract Mathematics MATH 3310 Introduction to Abstract Algebra MATH 3320 Introduction to Analysis 
Required Course Substitution Notes  With the approval of the Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs, advanced students may omit required courses, substituting three credits in MATH courses numbered 4400 or higher for each. 
Required Elective Courses  Eighteen (18) elective credits in MATH courses numbered 3312, 3322, or 4400 and above. 
GPA Requirement  A grade point average of at least 1.67 must be achieved in the MATH courses which make up your major. 
If you have a question about getting started in the major (for 99% of our students, this will be somewhere in the Calculus sequence MATH 1102  MATH 1105  MATH 2202/3), please visit the Mathematics major advisement pages of our Advisement Website.
Planning
Most B.A. candidates will begin their program with a Calculus course. The earlier you complete the required Calculus courses, the easier your scheduling becomes.
Programs for Those Beginning With Calculus for Math and Science
These are the usual scheduling grids we see among our majors who started right away in first semester of freshman year in a Calculus course designed for Math and Science majors:
About 20% begin by taking MATH 1102 Calculus I in their first semester. Many of these students have had little or no Calculus before entering BC, while some have taken a semester or more of Calculus but do not feel prepared to enter Calculus II right away. Several of these students may actually begin a major other than mathematics (the usual suspects: Chemistry, Computer Science B.S. Program, GeologyGeophysics, Geophysics, and Physics).
For these students, the major requirements can be satisfied as follows:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1102  MATH 1103 
Sophomore  MATH 2202/3  MATH 2210/1 MATH 2216 
Junior  MATH 3320 or MATH 3310 MATH elective  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
About 45% begin with MATH 1105 Calculus IIAP in their first semester. If you are prepared to enter MATH 1105 right away in the Fall of your freshman year (e.g., you got at least a four on the Calculus AB Advanced Placement Exam), then your major requirements can easily be satisfied as follows:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1105  MATH 2202 
Sophomore  MATH 2210  MATH 2216 
Junior  MATH 3320 or MATH 3310 MATH elective  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
Almost 35% begin with MT 2202 in their first semester. If you are prepared to enter MT 2202 in the Fall of your freshman year (e.g., you got a five on the Calculus BC Advanced Placement Exam), then your requirements are reduced to:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 2202/3  MATH 2210/1 
Sophomore  MATH 2216  MATH 3320 or MATH 3310 
Junior  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
All of the proposed schedules above are conservative. None requires more than two courses in any semester, none proposes any acceleration during the first two years, and none proposes completing more than a minimal program. But some students will be eager to learn more mathematics sooner; some may plan on taking an extra mathematics elective or two while at BC; and some may have specific preferences for courses which match career goals. Please see the closing sections of this page for comments about these situations.
What If You Don't Start with a Math and Science Calculus Course?
About 15% of our eventual B.A. candidates do not take one of the required Calculus courses for Math and Science Majors in their first semester. Many of these students probably elected majors which required them to take other Calculus courses. One example would include:
A student who completes one of MATH 1100 or MATH 1101 in the first semester (example: a Biology major) can transition to and complete a mathematics major by moving into MATH 1103 in the second semester:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1103  
Sophomore  MATH 2202/3  MATH 2210/1 or MATH 2216 
Junior  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
Almost every student who joins the B.A. program after the first semester will require an individualized recommendation for arranging his or her program of study, and he or she should consult the Mathematics Assistant Chair for Undergraduates as soon as possible.
Variations in Scheduling
There are reasons why the schedules proposed above will have to be modified for some students. The typical variations we see, together with proposed modifications, include these:
Junior Year Abroad (worst case, assuming you don't take any mathematics courses while abroad—although most of our majors who go abroad take at least one mathematics course while they're away from BC):
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1105  MATH 2202 
Sophomore  MATH 2210 MATH 2216  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Junior  Semester Abroad  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
LSOE Student (LSOE students are required to studentteach for one semester, usually in the Fall semester of senior year):
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1105  MATH 2202/3 
Sophomore  MATH 2210/1  MATH 2216 MATH elective 
Junior  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective MATH elective  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Senior  Student Teaching  MATH elective MATH elective 
Late Change to Mathematics (worst case: a student who took MATH 1100MATH 1101 in first year):
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  
Sophomore  MATH 1105 or MATH 2202/3 or MATH 2210/1  MATH 2210/1 or MATH 2202/3 MATH 2216 
Junior  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective  MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
Nevertheless, no matter what variations might affect your situation, we strongly urge that you adhere to these basic recommendations in working out a scheduling of courses for the major:
 Complete MATH 2202/3 as early as you can;
 Complete at least one of MATH 2210/1 or MATH 2216 no later than first semester of sophomore year, and complete both no later than the end of sophomore year (MATH 2210/1 is usually completed before MATH 2216, but there may be situations in which this need not be the case);
 Complete at least one of MATH 3310 or MATH 3320 in first semester of junior year; and complete both no later than the end of junior year (these courses are independent and can be taken in either order);
 Complete at least one elective course no later than first semester of junior year; and at least two elective courses no later than the end of junior year.
If you have a question about getting started in the major (for 99% of our students, this will be somewhere in the Calculus sequence MATH 1102  MATH 1105  MATH 2202) please visit the Mathematics major advisement website. Descriptions of all courses for math majors can be found on our Course description page.
We also have other pages targeted towards helping you plan your math program and/or make room in your schedule if you're thinking about going abroad.
For More Information and Advice
Feel free to contact any of the following:
Rennie Mirollo
Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs
Maloney Hall 544
6175523762
renato.mirollo@bc.edu
Martin Bridgeman
Assistant Chair for Graduate Programs
Maloney Hall 547
6175523770
bridgem@bc.edu
The Bachelor of Science program in Mathematics is designed to give students a rigorous and thorough mathematical experience, one that includes connection to another area of scholarship in which mathematics is an essential tool. In particular, the program is strongly recommended for those who wish to pursue graduate study in mathematics.
The Mathematics major requires completion of at least 36 credits, depending upon the student's preparation in Calculus prior to entering Boston College.
Preparation (if necessary)  MATH 1102 Calculus I (Math and Science Majors), or its equivalent (e.g., four or higher on the Calculus AP exam) MATH 1103 Calculus II (Math and Science Majors), or MATH 1105 Calculus IIAP (Math and Science Majors), or an equivalent (e.g., five on the Calculus BC AP exam). 
Required Courses  MATH 2202 Multivariable Calculus or MATH 2203 Multivariable Calculus (Honors) MATH 2210 Linear Algebra or MATH 2211 Linear Algebra (Honors) MATH 2216 Introduction to Abstract Mathematics MATH 33113312 Algebra I,II MATH 33213322 Analysis I,II MATH 4460 Complex Variables 
Required Course Substitution Notes  With the approval of the Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs, advanced students may omit required courses, substituting three credits in MATH courses numbered 4000 or higher for each. 
Required Elective Courses  Twelve (12) elective credits in MATH courses numbered 4000 and above. 
Science Courses  Twelve (12) credits in natural science, computer science, or economics, science courses (see science courses tab). 
GPA Requirement  A grade point average of at least 1.67 must be achieved in the MATH courses which make up your major. 
If you have a question about getting started in the major (for 99% of our students, this will be somewhere in the Calculus sequence MATH 1102  MATH 1105  MATH 2202/3), please visit the Mathematics major advisement pages of our Advisement Website.
Planning
Most B.S. candidates will begin their program with a calculus course. The earlier you complete the required Calculus courses, the easier your scheduling becomes.
Typical B.S. Programs
If you begin your program in Calculus I, the requirements may be satisfied as follows:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1102  MATH 1103 
Sophomore  MATH 2202/3  MATH 2210/1 MATH 2216 
Junior  MATH 3311 MATH 3321  MATH 3312 MATH 3322 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
If you begin your program in Calculus II, the requirements may be satisfied as follows:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 1105  MATH 2202 
Sophomore  MATH 2210/1  MATH 2216 MATH elective 
Junior  MATH 3311 MATH 3321  MATH 3312 MATH 3322 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective MATH elective 
If you are prepared to enter MATH 2202 in the Fall of your freshman year (e.g., you got a five on the Calculus BC Advanced Placement Exam), then your requirements are reduced to:
Class  Fall  Spring 

Freshman  MATH 2202/3  MATH 2210/1 MATH 2216 
Sophomore  MATH 3311 / MATH 3321  MATH 3312 / MATH 3322 
Junior  MATH 3311 / MATH 3321 Math elective  MATH 3312 / MATH 3322 MATH elective 
Senior  MATH elective MATH elective  MATH elective 
All of the proposed schedules above are conservative. None requires more than two courses in any semester, none proposes any acceleration during the first two years, and none proposes completing more than a minimal program. But some students will be eager to learn more mathematics sooner; many will be anxious to accelerate to prepare for graduate school. These students should see the Assistant Chair for Undergraduates.
Below is a list of courses in natural science, computer science, and economics that will satisfy the requirements for the B.S. in Mathematics. The Department is also open to other courses with significant mathematical content. Students may consult with the Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs about other possibilities.
Biology
 BIOL 2000 Molecules and Cells
 BIOL 2010 Ecology and Evolution
 BIOL 3040 Cell Biology
 BIOL 3190 Genetics & Genomics
 BIOL 4200 Introduction to Bioinformatics
Chemistry
 CHEM 1109 (1117) 1110 (1118) General (Honors Modern) Chemistry I, II
 CHEM 3351 Analytical Chemistry
 CHEM 44754476 Physical Chemistry I, II
Computer Science
 CSCI 11011102 Computer Science I,II
 Any upper division course for majors in Computer Science.
Economics
 ECON 2228 Econometric Methods
 ECON 2229 Forecasting Techniques
 ECON 3308 Game Theory in Economics
 ECON 3311 Mathematics for Economists
Earth and Environmental Sciences
 EESC 3391 Introduction to Geophysics
 EESC 4424 Environmental Geophysics
 EESC 4455 Exploration of Seismology
Physics
 PHYS 2100 (2200)  2101 (2201) Introduction to Physics (Calculus) I, II
 Recommended. Any upper division course for majors in Physics.
If you have a question about getting started in the B.S. Program or transitioning to it please consult with the Assistant Chair for Undergraduates.
For More Information and Advice
Feel free to contact any of the following:
Rennie Mirollo
Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs
Maloney Hall 544
6175523762
renato.mirollo@bc.edu
Martin Bridgeman
Assistant Chair for Graduate Programs
Maloney Hall 547
6175523770
bridgem@bc.edu
Students who complete the following will be awarded the Minor in Mathematics.
Required Courses  MATH 2202 or MATH 2203 Multivariable Calculus MATH 2210 or MATH 2211 Linear Algebra 
Required Course Substitution Notes  With the approval of the Assistant Chair for Undergraduate students may omit required courses, substituting an elective chosen from the approved courses listed below for each course. AP credit cannot be used to satisfy requirements for the minor. 
Twelve Elective Credits  Twelve elective credits, chosen from among the following:

Recommended Electives for Minors
Certain courses in Mathematics are particularly wellsuited for students in other, mathematicsrelated majors.
Biology and Chemistry
 MATH 4410 Differential Equations
 MATH 4426 Mathematical Probability
 MATH 4427 Mathematical Statistics
 MATH 4470 Mathematical Modeling
Computer Science
 MATH 4426 Probability
 MATH 4445 Combinatorics
 MATH 4414 Numerical Analysis
 MATH 4427 Mathematical Statistics
 MATH 4430 Number Theory
 MATH 4435 Mathematical Programming
 MATH 4470 Mathematical Modeling
Economics and Management
 MATH 4410 Differential Equations
 MATH 4414 Numerical Analysis
 MATH 4426 Mathematical Probability
 MATH 4427 Mathematical Statistics
 MATH 4435 Mathematical Programming
 MATH 4470 Mathematical Modeling
Physics
 MATH 4410 Differential Equations
 MATH 4414 Numerical Analysis
 MATH 4426 Mathematical Probability
 MATH 4427 Mathematical Statistics
 MATH 4440 Dynamical Systems
 MATH 4451 Euclidean and NonEuclidean Geometry
 MATH 4460 Complex Variables
 MATH 4470 Mathematical Modeling
Rennie Mirollo
Assistant Chair for Undergraduate Programs
Maloney Hall 544
6175523762
renato.mirollo@bc.edu
Martin Bridgeman
Assistant Chair for Graduate Programs
Maloney Hall 547
6175523770
bridgem@bc.edu
Candidates for either the Bachelor of Arts or the Bachelor of Science who meet the following requirements will be awarded Departmental Honors in Mathematics:
 Completion of the mathematics requirements for the B.S. degree.
That is, all honors students must take twelve courses in mathematics, including MATH 3311, MATH 3312, MATH 3321, MATH 3322, MATH 4460.
 A grade point average of at least 3.3 in all math courses numbered 3300 and above.
 Completion, as one of the required electives, of an honors thesis course MATH 4498 or an independent study course MATH 4499 under the direction of a faculty member.
or  Completion, as one of the required electives, of a graduate course at the 8800 level.