The Master of Science in Mathematics (120 ECTS) is a research-based master’s programme in which you can specialize in the following fields of mathematics: Pure Mathematics: Algebra, Analysis and Geometry; and Applied Mathematics: Statistics, Financial Mathematics, Computational Mathematics, Plasma-Astrophysics.
Besides a solid, all-round education in mathematics, the programme offers you the possibility to focus on either pure or applied mathematics. This allows you to acquire both breadth of knowledge and depth in your own areas of interest. Pure and applied mathematics courses are firmly grounded in the core research activities of the Department of Mathematics. Gradually, you will gain experience and autonomy in learning how to cope with new concepts, higher levels of abstraction, new techniques, new applications, and new results. This culminates in the Master’s thesis, where you become actively involved in the research performed in the various mathematical research groups of the Departments of Mathematics, Physics, Astronomy and Computer Sciences.
This is an initial Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.
The programme of the Master of Science in Mathematics consists of 120 ECTS. You choose one of the two profiles – Pure Mathematics or Applied Mathematics (54 ECTS) – and one of the two options – Research Option or Professional Option (30 ECTS). The profile allows you to specialize either in pure mathematics (algebra, geometry, analysis), or in applied mathematics (statistics, computational mathematics, fluid dynamics).
There is one common course: ‘Mathematics of the 21st Century’ (6 ECTS). To complete the programme, you carry out a research project that results in a master’s thesis (30 ECTS).
All staff members of the Department of Mathematics are actively involved in the two-year Master of Science in Mathematics programme. The academic staff at the Department of Mathematics consists of leading experts in their fields. Researchers in pure mathematics focus on algebraic geometry, group theory, differential geometry, functional analysis, and complex analysis. Researchers in mathematical statistics deal with extreme values, robust statistics, non-parametric statistics, and financial mathematics. Research in the applied mathematics group is in computational fluid dynamics and plasma-astrophysics.
Mathematicians find employment in industry and in the banking, insurance, and IT sectors. Many graduates from the research option pursue a career in research and start a PhD in mathematics, mathematical physics, astrophysics, engineering, or related fields.
This course is designed to build on your existing mathematical skills and allows you to both broaden and deepen your understanding of the branch or branches of mathematics which most interest you.
The flexibility of this course allows you to either keep your studies quite broad, learning a range of mathematical techniques or specialise in areas of pure mathematics, applied mathematics or statistics depending on your interests.
If you do not meet the full academic entry requirements then you may wish to consider the Graduate Diploma in Mathematics. This course is aimed at students who would like to study for a mathematics related MSc course but do not currently meet the entry requirements.
On completion of the Graduate Diploma, students who meet the required performance level will be eligible for entry onto a number of related MSc courses, in the following academic year.
There are a range of taught modules to choose from which provide the opportunity to combine mainstream, advanced mathematical topics and innovative methods selected from the research interests of the School of Mathematics.
You must enrol on 180 or 185 credits in total, made up from both taught modules and an individual research project.
Teaching is by lectures, tutorials, seminars and supervised research projects. Extensive use is made of IT and a wide range of materials is available to enable students to study at their own pace and in their own time to enhance and extend the material taught formally.
Assessment is by a range of methods, including formal examination, in-class tests, example sheets, problem solving, project work and verbal presentations.
The research project will be assessed based on 85% from the written report, and 15% from an oral presentation. It will contribute 60 credits to the overall total.
There is a high demand for mathematicians and statisticians across a range of sectors such as the petroleum and nuclear industries, medicine and IT, as well as many forms of engineering and different government departments.
Further study at Masters level can be useful for some maths-related careers such as operational research, medical statistics in pharmaceutical companies, meteorology, engineering design, finance and IT-based roles.
Common Careers paths for Maths graduates include:
Actuaries evaluate, manage and advise on financial risks. They use their knowledge of business and economics, together with their understanding of probability theory, statistics and investment theory, to provide strategic, commercial and financial advice.
Operational researchers use analytical and creative skills to assist organisations in developing better systems and operational procedures. By examining an organisation's operations and using mathematical modelling, computer software or other analytical approaches, they find more effective ways of working.
Corporate investment banker
Corporate investment bankers provide a range of financial services to companies, institutions and governments. They manage corporate, strategic and financial opportunities, including:
Corporate investment bankers also advise and lead management buyouts, raise capital, provide strategic advice to clients, and identify and secure new deals
A quantity surveyor manages all costs relating to building and civil engineering projects, from the initial calculations to the final figures. Surveyors seek to minimise the costs of a project and enhance value for money, while still achieving the required standards and quality.
Meteorologists study the causes of particular weather conditions using information obtained from the land, sea and upper atmosphere. They use computerised and mathematical models to make short and long-range forecasts concerning weather and climate patterns.
This MSc in Mathematics will provide you with excellent preparation for research for an MPhil or PhD. At Leeds we have a range of research opportunities available and in some cases you can progress to a PhD on the basis of a specified performance in the MSc.
The quality of the School’s research was recognised in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) where Mathematics at Leeds was ranked equal 8th overall and equal 9th for research impact in the UK.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
This programme reflects and benefits from the strong research activities of the Department of Mathematics.
The taught modules and dissertation topics are closely aligned with the interests of the Department’s four research groups:
During the first two semesters you will take a range of taught modules from an extensive list of options, followed by an extended research project conducted over the summer under the supervision of a member of the department, culminating in the writing of a dissertation.
This programme is studied full-time over one academic year. It consists of eight taught modules and a dissertation.
Example module listing
The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.
Mathematics is not only central to science, technology and finance-related fields, but the logical insight, analytical skills and intellectual discipline gained from a mathematical education are highly sought after in a broad range of other areas such as law, business and management.
There is also a strong demand for new mathematics teachers to meet the ongoing shortage in schools.
As well as being designed to meet the needs of future employers, our MSc programme also provides a solid foundation from which to pursue further research in mathematics or one of the many areas to which mathematical ideas and techniques are applied.
Knowledge and understanding
Intellectual / cognitive skills
Professional practical skills
Key / transferable skills
We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.
In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.