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Undergraduate Math research

  1. Dec 26, 2007 #1
    First of all, I'm a second year pure mathematics major/computer science minor with a 4.0 math g.p.a. and a 3.878 overall g.p.a. I'm looking to go to graduate school right after I get my B.S. I am very studious and I am constantly studying.

    I've been asking all my professors about research opportunities for math undergraduates, and most have led me to believe there isn't very much opportunity outside the REU program. So here are a few questions.

    I've heard some of the REU programs are "lazy", if you have any experience with the REU program, could you recommend a good one.

    I've began to study analysis and abstract algebra already but I’m not going to take a course in either until fall 2008, what year do REU programs and any math research programs usually require, ( most applications do not specify ), but are there any standards?

    I've heard that the Math in Budapest program is quite excellent for undergrads, has any one here done this program, or heard anything about it from someone who has.

    Finally, how common is it for undergrads to do pure math research and how much are colleges looking for research?

    I want to attend one of the top 5 math schools, the purpose of this is to help me assess the likelihood of attending these schools based on my current progress and future opportunities. Thank you for you help.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 26, 2007 #2
    I did a Math REU last summer, and it was probably one you could call "lazy." However, it really is up to you as far as how much (or how little) effort you want to put towards your research. Overall I thought it was a great experience, and would highly recommend it to anyone. The REU program at Trinity seemed pretty good.

    We had a grad student at our school that did the Summer in Budapest (along with the Penn State MASS REU and Semester at Penn State). I talked to him about all of these things (he was the one that told me I should apply to REUs in the first place), and he recommended all of these programs. From what he said, the Budapest semester seems to be pretty serious (in terms of math) and you can take some "hard" classes over there. He seemed pleased with his experience at all of these places (sorry that I cannot remember all of the details). There is also a semester at some school in Russia that you might want to take a look at.
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