## Transferrable Skills of a Mathematics Major

## Cambridge University

A graduate in Mathematics typically will have the ability to:

(You will find further statements describing skills derived from a maths degree in the

From an employer's perspectiveLooking at transferable skills from an employer's perspective, and using their language, the skills you can be expected to have gained from your degree at Cambridge are:

- demonstrate knowledge of key mathematical concepts and topics
- abstract the essentials of problems and formulate them mathematically and in symbolic form so as to facilitate their analysis and solution
- present mathematical arguments and the conclusions from them with accuracy and clarity
- have skills relating to rigorous argument and solving problems in general, and a facility to deal with abstraction including the logical development of formal theories
- have skills relating to formulating physical theories in mathematical terms, solving the resulting equations analytically or numerically, and giving physical interpretations
- focus on statistics that will include skills relating to the design and conduct of experimental and observational studies and the analysis of data resulting from them
- have skills relating to formulating complex problems of optimisation and interpreting the solutions in the original contexts of the problems
- have the ability to learn independently using a variety of media
- work with patience and persistence, pursuing problem solutions to their conclusion
- have good general skills of time management and organisation
- be adaptable, in particular displaying readiness to address new problems from new areas
- transfer knowledge to assess problems logically and to approach them analytically
- have highly developed numeracy and ICT skills
- have communication skills such as the ability to write coherently and clearly
- apply concepts and principles in loosely-defined contexts, showing effective judgement in selecting and applying tools and techniques
- demonstrate appropriate transferable skills and the ability to work with relatively little guidance or support.

(You will find further statements describing skills derived from a maths degree in the

__QAA Subject benchmark statement__for Mathematics, statistics and operational research)From an employer's perspectiveLooking at transferable skills from an employer's perspective, and using their language, the skills you can be expected to have gained from your degree at Cambridge are:

- Analytical Skills - A general analytical approach to problems. An understanding of data sets and the ability to derive meaning from data.
- Problem solving skills / creativity - A logical approach to problem solving, working from the known to the unknown and coming up with new solutions by applying your knowledge to new problems and situations.
- IT Skills - From your general IT knowledge and CATAM project work.
- Planning / time management - Completing your work requirements on time during short intense terms, while also engaging in other activities at Cambridge.
- Independence / Confidence - Independent tripos work, supervisions, arguing a case in a supervision.
- Verbal communication skills - Talking through problems during supervisions.
- Adaptability / Persistence and 'Stick-ability' - Continually learning and adapting new material and applying this to new and varied problems. Working in a pressured environment. The rigour of working complex maths problems through to a solution.

- Teamwork
- Leadership
- Commercial awareness
- Written and verbal communication skills
- Presentation skills

## University of Omaha

Knowledge & Skills Gained as a Math Major:

In addition to the specific knowledge acquired in each course, all math majors learn that:

**Knowledge:**In addition to the specific knowledge acquired in each course, all math majors learn that:

- Mathematics is a universal language

- Mathematics is the art and science of problem solving

- Math is all around us, from the simplistic to the complex

- Mathematics is essential for solving real-world problems

- Calculus is the mathematics of change

- Logic is the basis for all mathematical reasoning

- Proofs are the essence of mathematics

**Skills:**- Adept at solving quantitative problems

- Ability to understand both concrete and abstract problems

- Proficient in communicating mathematical ideas

- Detail-oriented

- Ability to make critical observations

- Accurately organize, analyze, and interpret data

- Extract important information and patterns

- Assess and solve complex problems

- Able to work independently and on a team

## Warwick University

**Mathematical Skills.**As a mathematics student you will study each of the major subject areas of modern mathematics: algebra, analysis, geometry, statistics, and applied mathematics. In the course of this study you will learn:

- The language of mathematics and the rules of logic.
- How to state a mathematical idea precisely.
- How to prove or disprove a mathematical conjecture.
- How to extract meaning from mathematics on the written page.
- How to use mathematics to describe the physical world.

**Analytical Skills.**Having done a Mathematics Degree, you will never again be able to tolerate sloppy reasoning. Mathematics will enhance your ability to:

- Think clearly.
- Pay attention to detail.
- Manipulate precise and intricate ideas.
- Follow complex reasoning.
- Construct logical arguments and expose illogical ones.

**Problem Solving Skills.**You will be given countless mathematical problems to solve over the course of your degree. Experience with these will teach you to:

- Formulate a problem in precise terms, identifying the key issues.
- Present a solution clearly, making your assumptions explicit.
- Gain insight into a difficult problem by looking at special cases or sub-problems.
- Be flexible, and approach the same problem from different points of view.
- Tackle a problem with confidence, even when the solution is not obvious.
- Seek help when you need it.

**Investigative Skills.**During your studies you will sometimes find yourself trying to understand mathematics that seems too hard, and trying to solve problems that at first seem impossible. You may also be asked to do essays and projects which involve you privately investigating an area of mathematics you know nothing about. All this will turn you into an amateur sleuth, on the trail of information and inspiration. You should find yourself:

- Looking up lecture notes, text books and reference books.
- Scouring the library.
- Searching databases for references.
- Extracting information from every mathematician you meet (other undergraduates, postgraduates, tutors and lecturers).
- Thinking!

**Communication Skills.**A Mathematics Degree will develop your capacity to assimilate and communicate highly technical information. During lectures you will be required to organise and record a mass of mathematical detail, both spoken and written. Homework exercises, and any essays and projects you do, will call for clear mathematical exposition. During supervisions you will find yourself exchanging mathematical ideas with your supervisor and fellow students. You may well find yourself discussing mathematics in conversation with your fellow students and your lecturers. In your later years you may be given the opportunity to teach other undergraduates. Through these experiences you will have the opportunity to learn how to:

- Listen effectively.
- Write mathematics well.
- Write essays and reports.
- Give a mathematical presentation to a group.

**IT Skills.**During your degree you will have access to computing facilities. You will have the opportunity to:

- Learn a programming language.
- Solve problems using mathematical software.
- Learn word-processing, of both text and mathematics.

**Good Working Habits.**To be a successful mathematics student you will have to:

- Be thorough and painstaking in your work.
- Organise your time and meet deadlines.
- Work under pressure, especially near exam time.
- Work independently, without constant support from teachers.
- Work co-operatively with others to solve common problems.

**Useful Personality Traits.**One mathematics professor used to tell each incoming first year class that doing a Maths Degree would change them for life. Battling successfully with ideas that are hard to understand and problems that are hard to solve fosters:

- Determination
- Perseverance
- Creativity
- Self-confidence, and
- Intellectual rigour.