Frequently Asked Questions
How do I declare or add a Mathematics Major?
Go to the department of your current major, and fill out a major change form. If you are changing to a Math Major (and not adding it as a second major), your current department will release your advising file to you, if one exists, and a copy of the form. Bring them both to the Math Office, Laurentide Hall. Our administrative assistant will collect them and assign an advisor to you.
Do I need to decide on an emphasis at the time I declare or change to a Math Major?
If you are undecided as to which emphasis to declare, temporarily choose the Pure Math emphasis. The first 6 courses in the five emphases are the same. Once you've made your decision, you can always change your emphasis. Remember that your AAR will be updated only after the form has been completed by you and processed by the Registrar.
When am I assigned an advisor?
Math Majors are assigned an advisor by the department when they have attained sophomore status (at least 24 units). Notification will occur by campus e-mail.
When should I see my advisor?
An advising hold is placed on your record each semester by the department. About 3 weeks prior to the start of registration, an e-mail will be sent to you reminding you to make an appointment with your advisor. Sign-up sheets for appointments are posted outside your advisor's office. After the appointment, he/she will sign off on your schedule and hand you your advising file. Drop it off at the Math Office. If no one is there, slide it under the door. The department's administrative assistant will remove your hold so that you can register for next semester's classes. Do not wait to schedule an appointment with your advisor.
What should I bring with me to my advising appointment?
Always bring a recent copy of your AAR. Your first advising appointment will be the longest as a tentative undergraduate plan for your math major courses will be devised. A copy of the plan will be given to you with the original staying in your advising file. Remember that advising appointments are excellent opportunities to bring up any questions or concerns that you may have.
Can I see my advisor at times other than prior to registration?
Of course. Feel free to stop by, call or e-mail your advisor anytime that you have a question.
If I am a Secondary Ed Math Major, do I have an advisor in the College of Education?
Yes, your advisor is Dr. Virginia Pease. Her contact information is:
Virginia Pease, Ph.D.
Office: Winther Hall Room 4048
Phone: (262) 472-5437
I already have a bachelor's degree but am returning to earn a Math Major. Am I assigned an advisor?
Yes, the Chair of Mathematical & Computer Sciences is your advisor and is responsible for evaluating your transcripts from previous institutions to determine which courses are required to successfully complete the major. Currently, the AR does not keep track of requirements for post-baccalaureate students.
What's the difference between the BSE, BS, and BA degrees?
Secondary Ed Math Majors earn a BSE (Bachelor's of Science in Education) degree from the College of Education. Other Math Majors earn their degree from the College of Letters & Sciences and have a choice between the BS and the BA degrees. Here is a summary of the differences:
- The BA degree requirements are completion of: i) 6 credits of 300/400 level course work (restrictions apply) and ii) 1 year of a single foreign language
- The BS degree requirements are completion of: i) a second lab science course from a different academic area than the one used for the University Requirements and ii) either 5 credits of math beyond Math 141 or 3 credits of Computer Science and 3 credits of math beyond Math 141.
If you plan on attending graduate school in math or science, earning a BS degree is strongly recommended. For more information, see the College of Letters & Sciences Degree Planning Guide.
Do I need to declare a minor?
Yes. The approved list of minors in the College of Letters & Sciences can be found here. Note that if you are double-majoring, a minor is not required.
Is there a minimum GPA requirement for graduation?
Yes. Secondary Ed Math Majors are required to have at least a 2.75 GPA before they can be admitted to the College of Education and need to maintain that GPA in order to graduate. (See all requirements) All other Math Majors are required to earn at least a 2.0 in their major, in their minor, and overall.
When do I apply for graduation?
Early in the semester before you graduate, go to the Registrar's Office (Roseman Hall Room 2032) and fill out the appropriate form or go to the Registrar's website and fill out the form online. If any problems arise, you will have a semester to fix them. At your last advising session, your advisor will carefully check your AR with you.
Are all Math Major courses offered every semester?
No. Core courses are, but emphasis courses are offered either every year or every two years. To check the course rotation schedule for mathematics and computer sciences courses, visit the Course Descriptions page.
What if I decide to change from math to some other major?
Come to the Math Office and fill out a change of major form. A copy of this form along with your advising file will be handed to you. Take these immediately to the department of your new major.
Is there a place for Math Majors to study?
Yes. The room, Laurentide 2249, is named "Cantor's Escape" and is open for use by Math Majors. Rules for use of the room are posted and are intended to keep the room neat and clean for all.
Are there opportunities for me to get involved in undergraduate research?
Yes. Every year, more students work with faculty and staff from Mathematical & Computer Sciences on undergraduate research. A list of projects from the past year is found on the departmental website.
Are there mathematics competitions for undergraduate students?
Yes, UW-Whitewater participates in two mathematics competitions: (1) the William Lowell Putnam Competition which is an examination containing 12 very challenging problems offered the first Saturday in December each year, and (2) the American Society for Mathematics offers a problem solving contest with monthly problems offered throughout the academic year.