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Suggestions for Math Classes

The following proposal is tentative, and should not be considered final until this sentance disappears!  Be sure to discuss your plans with your major advisor, or a faculty member in physics if you have not yet declared a physics major.


  • Year 1 (Freshmen, or first year in the Physics major)
    • General Physics (PHY 211 and 212) are calculus-based physics classes, so you need to have Calc I (MTH 245) as a co- or pre-requisite for these classes.  
    • After PHY 212, some sophmore-level courses like Modern Physics (PHY 301), and Optics (PHY 331) require require Calc II (MTH 246) as pre-requisites. 
    • The best practice is to take Calc-II (MTH 246) along with PHY 212.
  • Year 2 (Sophomores)
    • Upper division Physics classes rely heavily on a firm mathematics background. It is often the case that mathematics is best understood in the applied context of Physics. And since Physics requires practical application of  math, you'll also be learning through direct practice in upper division Physics courses.
    • The two classes that will help you the most are Calc III (MTH 347) and Mathematical Physics (PHY 551).  
    • Best practice will be to take Calc III (MTH 347) concurrently with Modern Physics (PHY 301) in the Fall of your sophomore year,  followed by Mathematical Physics (PHY 551) in the Spring. 
  • Year 3 (Juniors)
    • Students going on to Graduate school in Physics or Engineering should plan to take Linear Algebra (MTH 529) and Differential Equations (MTH 545).
  • Year 4 (Seniors)
    • Additional courses can help round-out your mathematics preparation for graduate programs in Physics and Engineering. There are many possibilities, but two of particular relevance include Partial Differential Equations (MTH 546), and possibly Complex Analysis (MTH 593), though other Math courses could also be recommended.
    • BONUS! Students completing all of these classes will complete the requirements for a Mathematics Minor!


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