The mathematics major and minor programs provide a solid general education that produces the sort of numbers that speak for themselves. In 2009 BVU's senior mathematics majors collectively scored at the 94th percentile on the Educational Testing Service's Major Field Test in Mathematics when compared to students at 400 colleges and universities from across the nation.
Math classes are rigorous, though the course loads for the program's majors and minor have small enough credit requirements that they can be earned in conjunction with other degree programs like computer science, physics, accounting, business, and political science.
The mathematics program culminates in a guided research project as part of the major capstone class. "With these research projects students are not just learning mathematics, they're creating it," says Benjamin B. Donath, associate professor of mathematics and dean of the School of Science. "The research environment is very different from the classroom setting, in which the material has been carefully massaged. When doing research, you go down lots of blind alleys; you're often forced to back up and start again. This is the nature of research. It's how discovery ultimately takes place."
Designed specifically by the mathematics faculty to be an ideal place for collaboration, problem solving and working out theorems, the Mathematics Lab features three walls of nearly floor-to-ceiling whiteboard. More astonishing than the amount of whiteboard is how fast all its space can be filled by professors and students.
As mathematics faculty, we challenge our students to use curricular opportunities to achieve high levels of discipline-centered proficiency. Our best students meet and exceed these challenges; they both 'get it' and 'do it.'