1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Programs Where should I apply? PhD in Applied Mathematics

  1. Sep 5, 2012 #1
    Hello, I am currently in my final year at a California State University majoring in Mathematics (Applied track) and minoring in computer science. I've begun lurking forums such as the physics to figure out what sort of programs I am qualified to apply for, and what be good opportunities as well as available funding.

    Here is some of my academic background:

    GPA: 3.79
    Math GPA: 3.92
    GRE - 159 Q / 150 V / ?? A (Took it two days ago, I don't do standardized tests well)

    Significant courses taken:
    Calculus I-IV - B, A, A, A, respectively.
    Ordinary Differential Equations - A
    Linear Algebra - A
    Sets & Logic (First Proof-based course) - A
    Complex Variables - A
    Intro to Real Analysis - A
    Numerical Analysis - A

    Programming Fundamentals (C/C++) - A
    Data Structures & Algorithms (C/C++) - A
    Discrete Structures - A
    Computer Networks - A

    Left to take: Into to PDEs, Probability Theory, Abstract Algebra I, Intro to Real Analysis II (Measure Theory), and possibly a Mathematical Modeling course, Advanced Linear Algebra Course, and/or more computer science courses.

    Undergraduate Research:
    Participated in a NSF-funded REU this summer where I worked on Mathematical Modeling involving Fluid Dynamics (Solved large PDEs using Mathematica and Perturbation methods). Also currently doing a reading course involving Pseudorandom Sequences with a professor at my university and eventually going to have a project to work on and finish hopefully by the end of my last year.

    I have started a list of schools, but not sure where I can apply in terms of ranked schools, given my not-so stellar (but not bad) GRE scores. Not entirely sure what I would like to research, but the computational side of Applied Math I don't mind. Any recommendations?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 5, 2012 #2


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I would suggest applying to ~10 top schools from the top 20 math schools in the US. If having a year not in school is a possibility you aren't willing to consider, then also apply to a couple of backups that you're pretty sure you can get into and that are in places where you think you'd like to live. Get multiple people with excellent writing skills to give comments on your statement of purpose; I see tons of these that students have already sent in, and it breaks my heart because they're so badly written.
  4. Sep 6, 2012 #3
    1. Retake the GRE. If you think you can do better, DO BETTER.
    2. Don't even bother to apply for grad school until you know what you want to do. Unless you're simply applying at your own school where you have the respect of the faculty, you are setting yourself up for failure. You need a research topic. BEFORE YOU APPLY.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook