Applied math professor teaching a class
Degrees Offered: MS PhD Minor

Undergraduate Opportunities

Undergraduate course offerings in applied mathematics focus on providing students with the mathematical tools and problem­solving strategies that are useful in science and engineering. The department offers a range of courses and research opportunities in many areas, including computational mathematics, mathematical biology, nonlinear phenomena, physical applied mathematics and probability and statistics. The minor provides in­depth training in mathematical techniques and computational methods that goes well beyond the training usually received by science majors. The minor currently offers three tracks: general emphasis, scientific computing and mathematical software and probability and statistics. The goals of each track are to introduce students to more advanced mathematical techniques and problem­solving strategies. Such skills are becoming increasingly important for students who expect to participate in areas requiring analysis or modeling of real world situations.


Mathematics is applied to almost every discipline of science, technology and industry. Innovations in applied mathematics have become essential tools in the biological sciences, information technology, finance and investment and computer­generated special effects. Employees with applied mathematics training are sought by state and federal government, the military, financial services, software publishers and insurance companies. Academic fields as diverse as ecology and evolutionary biology, financial management, neuroscience, astronomy and computer animation rely on applied mathematical and computational modeling techniques. Industry relies on the application of mathematics and computation for the design and optimization of everything from aircraft and automobiles to communication systems and supply chains. New areas of application are discovered constantly, and older techniques are being applied to new and emerging fields.

Research Opportunities

Due to its smaller size, the Department of Applied Mathematics can provide nearly every student who wishes to work on research directly with faculty the opportunity to do so. In addition, each year the department participates in the Consortium for Mathematics and Its Applications’s “Mathematical Contest in Modeling.” This contest gives thousands of students around the world an opportunity to create a model of a real world problem on their own. The Department of Applied Mathematics at CU­Boulder has been an award winner in this contest for nearly 15 years.