Mathematics, one of the very oldest human disciplines, is an indispensable tool for analysing and explaining the world around us, providing us with the skills to deal with the most abstract concepts. Mathematics and statistics play a fundamental role in the sciences, in commerce and in every other activity where quantitative, analytical or logical understanding is important. Ultimately, mathematics is about clarity of thought and precision of understanding.

Through the study of mathematics, you will be immersed in a mixture of different topics ranging from linear algebra to data analysis and hypothesis testing, from the mathematics of counting and logic, to the techniques of calculus.

The honours year

The School of Mathematics offers honours in pure mathematics, applied mathematics and statistics. In the mathematics honours year, you will undertake a major research project on a specialised topic in pure or applied maths, or statistics, under the direction of a supervisor who is an expert in your selected topic and can guide you throughout your research. You will submit a thesis embodying the results of your investigation and undertake coursework involving attendance at lectures or seminars.

Active research areas in the school include nonlinear analysis, differential and difference equations, mathematical physics, cryptography, abstract harmonic analysis, combinatorics, asymptotic methods, extreme value theory, and applied probability.

Workload and assessment

Students can complete an honours year in applied mathematics or pure mathematics.

In applied mathematics honours, you will complete an essay or project, and six courses throughout the year. A project involves intensive research, analysis or computation, which requires some academic supervision, while an essay may cover a classical problem of acknowledged importance and mathematical depth on which you would provide your own critical evaluation. Assessment in applied mathematics honours comprises 40% for project/essay component and 60% for 6 units of study (10% each).

In pure mathematics honours, you will complete six lecture courses, together with an essay project (the equivalent of four lecture courses) and a 30 minute presentation on the essay project. Work on the essay project proceeds throughout the year and it is submitted near the end of the second semester. Assessment in pure mathematics honours comprises 40% for the essay project component and 60% for 6 units of study (10% each).

Honours projects

The School of Mathematics and Statistics offers honours projects in applied mathematics or pure mathematics. More information about research areas is available here:

In applied mathematics honours, you can either complete an essay/project suggested by a staff member, or you can choose a different topic, provided that you can find a supervisor for that topic within the school. Research areas in applied mathematics include astrophysical and geophysical modelling, financial mathematics, industrial modelling, mathematical biosciences, and nonlinear systems.

In pure mathematics, research areas include algebra, analysis, computational algebra, geometry, and non-linear analysis.

Related subject areas

Financial Mathematics and Statistics

Our courses that offer this honours subject area

Not available in 2014