Comparing Math Programs at UCF and FAU

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In summary, the speaker is currently a student at the University of Central Florida majoring in mathematics, with plans to attend graduate school for cryptography. They are considering transferring to Florida Atlantic University, as FAU has a stronger focus on cryptography and offers more relevant courses. The speaker also asks for opinions on the quality of the math programs at both schools. The conversation also touches on the importance of choosing a school based on the specific program rather than the school as a whole.
  • #1
Bill_B
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Earlier this year, I finished my AA degree from a community college and transferred to the University of Central Florida to major in mathematics. My plan is to finish my BS in math and attend grad school for math with a focus on cryptography. Admittedly, I haven't been at UCF for very long, but I'm considering transferring to Florida Atlantic University for the remainder of my BS.

The math programs at UCF seem to be very engineering and physics oriented. Even in the pure math track, there are a lot of engineering/physics oriented applied math courses, and most of the research going on in the department seems to be in support of the engineering and physics departments. Not that I have anything against physics or engineering -- it's just that my interests are elsewhere.

FAU has on its main campus, the "Center for Cryptography and Information Security," and quite a few of the school's math faculty are active researchers in cryptography. My feeling is that going there could give me good exposure to the field (even as an undergraduate), and a chance to make important and useful contacts. Plus, there are a few more crypto-related courses offered at FAU than at UCF.

Both are state schools, and my basic assumption is that I can get a good math education at either school. Though unfortunately, I don't really know how to validate that assumption, and it's possible that it's false.

So I have two main questions, though other comments or suggestions are also welcome -

Does anyone have information or opinions on the quality of the undergrad math programs at FAU vs. UCF?

Are my reasons for wanting to transfer valid/relevant?
 
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  • #2
neither is a good school but ucf is probably better than fau.

hands down though uf is the best choice in florida save maybe for um. i went to fsu and my brother is going to uf and according to several metrics uf is 3 times the school that fsu is (and therefore ucf)
 
  • #3
mxbob468 said:
neither is a good school but ucf is probably better than fau.

Are you speaking generally, or specifically with regard to their math programs?

mxbob468 said:
hands down though uf is the best choice in florida save maybe for um. i went to fsu and my brother is going to uf and according to several metrics uf is 3 times the school that fsu is (and therefore ucf)

You sound a lot like my coworker. She lives and breaths everything UF, despite the fact that she never went there. I don't really understand it, but then, I've never really cared about football or partying.

Regardless, neither UF nor UM are on my radar for various reasons.
 
  • #4
The college of optics and photonics at UCF is one of the top 3 programs in the country. (for optics and photonics obv.) Of the two, UCF is the obvious choice, but as stated above, for general (BS etc) neither are really that impressive.

I wouldn't go to the University of Miami for engineering, but it has one of the best music programs in the country. Point is, it's probably more important that the school you decide on has a program relevant to YOUR education, rather than basing your decision soley on the school as a whole.
 
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  • #5
QuarkCharmer said:
Point is, it's probably more important that the school you decide on has a program relevant to YOUR education, rather than basing your decision soley on the school as a whole.

Exactly. Unfortunatly I haven't been able to find very much information the relative quality of the math programs at UCF and FAU, which is why I'm asking here.

Though, relavance to my interests is my main reason for considering the transfer, since there's a lot of crypto-related activity going on at FAU, and (as far as I can tell) almost none at UCF.
 
  • #6
Just wondering if anyone else has any more input...
 
  • #7
Bill_B said:
Though, relavance to my interests is my main reason for considering the transfer, since there's a lot of crypto-related activity going on at FAU, and (as far as I can tell) almost none at UCF.

That's a really good reason to go. One thing that you'll find about universities is that some of the topics are multi-disciplinary. I do know some really good people in high performance computing and software testing from FAU.
 

Related to Comparing Math Programs at UCF and FAU

1. How do the math programs at UCF and FAU differ?

The main difference between the math programs at UCF and FAU is the curriculum. UCF's math program focuses more on applied mathematics and offers a wider variety of courses in this area, while FAU's program has a stronger emphasis on pure mathematics. Additionally, UCF has a larger faculty and more research opportunities for math students, while FAU has a smaller faculty but offers a more personalized learning experience.

2. Which program has a better reputation in the math field?

Both UCF and FAU have reputable math programs, but UCF is generally considered to have a stronger reputation due to its larger and more established program. UCF's math faculty are also highly regarded in their respective fields and have published numerous research papers.

3. How do the class sizes compare at UCF and FAU for math courses?

At UCF, math classes tend to be larger due to the larger student population, with introductory courses having around 100-200 students and upper-level courses having around 30-40 students. At FAU, class sizes are generally smaller with around 20-30 students in both introductory and upper-level courses.

4. Are there any notable differences in the internship or job opportunities for math students at UCF and FAU?

Both UCF and FAU have strong connections with local businesses and industries, providing internship and job opportunities for math students. However, UCF's larger size and location in a major city may offer more opportunities for students to network and gain hands-on experience in their field. FAU, on the other hand, has a smaller student population and may have more personalized and intimate connections with local businesses.

5. Can students easily transfer between the math programs at UCF and FAU?

It is possible for students to transfer between the math programs at UCF and FAU, but this will depend on the specific courses and requirements of each program. It is important for students to consult with their academic advisors and carefully review the course equivalencies before transferring to ensure a smooth transition between programs.

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