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Confused can I handle it?

  1. Jan 7, 2013 #1
    I am a third year undergrad math major with a minor in applied statistics, and have had a few upper level math courses already, these are the courses I have taken:

    Abstract Algebra, Real Analysis 1, Introduction to Numerical Analysis, and Combinatorics.

    I was planning on taking Elementary Number Theory this semester, as well as one other upper level math course. My school is offering Stochastic Processes and Function of a Complex Variable as well. I need to take Function of Complex Var, but I was really interested in taking Stochastic Processes as well. Would it be a good idea to take these 3 math classes together? Or should I stick to just two? Has anyone had experience with 3 upper level math courses?

    Here are the course descriptions:

    Elementary Number Theory
    Properties of the integers, the division algorithm, Euclid's algorithm, Fermat's theorems, unique factorization of integers into primes, congruences, arithmetic functions, Diophantine equations, continued fractions, quadratic reciprocity.

    Func of Complex Var
    Complex number system. Functions of a complex variable, their derivatives and integrals. Taylor and Laurent series expansions. Residue theory and applications, elementary functions, conformal mapping, and applications to physical problems.

    Stochastic Processes
    Review of distribution theory. Introduction to stochastic processes, Markov chains and Markov processes, counting, and Poisson and Gaussian processes.

    Thank you.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 7, 2013 #2


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    It's hard to say, just from the course descriptions. Have you consulted your advisor? He/she will have a pretty good idea how much effort these classes require.
  4. Jan 7, 2013 #3


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    It's hard to say and varies widely from school to school. In my experience though, Elementary Number Theory is a bit repetitive after taking an abstract algebra course. You can probably self-study much of the topic. Also Complex VARIABLE, is typically just a calculus type class that shows you how to work on the complex plane, and is typically vastly different than a complex analysis class (which would be much much much harder.) Lastly, Stochastic processes, at the undergrad level, is usually never to hard simply because there's a limit as to what you can really expose people. I do highly recommend this course if you plan to do stats later on though.

    With that said, as a math major, I took 3-4 math classes per semester my entire undergrad and did well. However, only you know your ability and the level of difficulty classes present. Listen to students who have taken the course or have taken a course with the professor scheduled to take it. For example, my Real Analysis class could've been a walk in the park with professor X or the most difficult class from professor Y.
  5. Jan 8, 2013 #4
    I can recommend stochastic processes, I had it last semester and it was fun, intuitive and fascinating.
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