Nontraditional candidate for Cambridge part III

In summary, this person is studying mathematics at a top US university, has done a year of study abroad, and is thinking about taking part III of the mathematical tripos at Cambridge. They have done some relevant coursework and also have research experience. It is not clear if they will be able to compete against people who have a bachelors and graduate coursework/research, but they are hesitant to ask their academic advisers for help.
  • #1
zazerbayev
2
0
Hi all,

I am currently an undergraduate at a top 10 US university majoring in mathematics. It is common for undergrads at my institution to do a year abroad, and I think that by my junior year I will be prepared to take part III of the mathematical tripos at Cambridge. Here is a list of some relevant courses I will have done by the end of my sophomore year.

- Linear Algebra at the level of Axler
- A year of graduate analysis at the level of Big Rudin and Lax
- A year of graduate commutative and homological algebra (with plenty of category theory).
- A course in measure theoretic probability.
- Maybe algebraic topology.
- A semester each of classical mechanics and quantum mechanics (I don't plan on doing any physics in part III).

Is this enough background for part III, and would I stand a realistic chance of being admitted? If I were to take this path, I would return to my US institution senior year and take some easy classes while focusing on research. I'd then apply for a Phd in math, statistics, or a mathematical area of computer science.

Edit: I would also be happy to consider other taught masters in Europe if there is one that is a better fit.
 
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  • #2
I don't have personal experience with the Cambridge tripos but my understanding is that part III is a masters program and that you should have a bachelors first. Maybe look at the Budapest Semesters in Mathematics and Math in Moscow programs. You also likely have advising services in your department that can help more than us- they should be able to offer more personalized advice and better know which programs would be a good fit for you.
 
  • #3
Infrared said:
I don't have personal experience with the Cambridge tripos but my understanding is that part III is a masters program and that you should have a bachelors first. Maybe look at the Budapest Semesters in Mathematics and Math in Moscow programs. You also likely have advising services in your department that can help more than us- they should be able to offer more personalized advice and better know which programs would be a good fit for you.

A small but nontrivial number of students at my university are nominally undergrads, but function basically as graduate students. This is to say they take graduate courses in math/physics and devote a significant amount of time to research. I figure that since it is realistic for me to be doing graduate level work by my third year, what's stopping me from formally doing a masters? A bachelors being a hard requirement could certainly be such an obstacle, but then again I know people who entered my university without a high school diploma.

I am reluctant to go to my academic advisers right now for fear of sounding crazy.
 
  • #4
Why would you sound crazy? Isn't this exactly the sort of situation they're supposed to be able to help with?

Anyway, the tripos attracts strong applicants. You'd be competing against people who have their bachelors and also graduate coursework/some research in undergrad. I suppose there's no reason not to apply but my guess is that you'd be at a disadvantage.
 
  • #5
zazerbayev said:
I am reluctant to go to my academic advisers right now for fear of sounding crazy.
This is bizarre. Your advisors certainly know your school's academic program better than we do, and, presumably, know you better than we do. Yet you would rather be guided by us (strangers on the web) than them. I can see asking us for second opinions, or asking us whether we've had experience with the Cambridge program you're considering. But bypassing your advisors as a first step is crazy (not just sounds crazy).
 
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Related to Nontraditional candidate for Cambridge part III

1. What is a nontraditional candidate for Cambridge part III?

A nontraditional candidate for Cambridge part III is someone who does not fit the typical profile of a Cambridge student. This could include individuals who have taken a gap year, have work experience, or come from a different academic background.

2. Can a nontraditional candidate be accepted into Cambridge for part III?

Yes, Cambridge welcomes applications from nontraditional candidates for part III. The university values diversity and recognizes the unique perspectives and experiences that nontraditional candidates can bring to the academic community.

3. How can a nontraditional candidate improve their chances of being accepted into Cambridge for part III?

Nontraditional candidates can improve their chances by highlighting their relevant skills, experiences, and academic achievements in their application. They can also demonstrate their passion for their chosen field of study and their commitment to academic excellence.

4. Are there any specific requirements for nontraditional candidates applying to Cambridge for part III?

The requirements for nontraditional candidates are the same as those for traditional candidates. This includes meeting the academic and language proficiency requirements, submitting a strong personal statement, and providing letters of recommendation.

5. Are there any resources available to help nontraditional candidates prepare for Cambridge part III?

Yes, there are resources available such as workshops, online courses, and guidance from academic advisors to help nontraditional candidates prepare for Cambridge part III. It is also recommended to reach out to current or former nontraditional students at Cambridge for advice and support.

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