Assessment of the Graduate Program

The Mathematics department offers a two-year program leading to a M.S. degree in Mathematics.

M.S. in Math Program Mission

The program aims to provide high-quality education in mathematics at the graduate level, through a range of rigorous advanced courses; to strengthen our students’ quantitative reasoning and problem-solving abilities; to equip our students with the necessary skills and knowledge in preparation for either joining the workforce in technical or educational fields, or pursuing Ph.D. degrees in math or other STEM disciplines; and to contribute to the mathematical profession through productive scholarship and active participation in the community and professional organizations.

Student Learning Goals

The math department has identified the following 4 major goals for the Master’s program with regard to student learning and achievement:

(A) Knowledge of core mathematics

(B) Breadth of study

(C) Depth and concentration in one or more specific area

(D) Rigor in reasoning and analysis

Student Learning Objectives (SLOs)

Upon completing a Master’s degree in Mathematics, a student is expected to demonstrate:

1. Mastery of calculus, linear algebra and differential equations at the undergraduate level.

2. Strong command of mathematical analysis and advanced linear algebra at the graduate level.

3. Solid grasp at the graduate level of key concepts and techniques in at least at least three of the following six areas: analysis, applied mathematics, computational mathematics, algebra and discrete mathematics, geometry and topology, and probability and statistics.

4. In-depth understanding of an advanced topic in mathematics not covered in the graduate curriculum.

5. Proficiency in constructing formal and correct proofs.

6. Ability to critically examine the correctness of mathematical arguments.

Assessment Plan for Graduate Program in Math

Assessment Measure Criteria Goal SLO

Performance in qualifying exam

Passing the exam will satisfy the SLO (passing score determined by graduate faculty)

Core Math 1

In-class performance in one of two core courses,
Math 504 (Abstract Linear Algebra) and Math 521 (Methods of Mathematical Analysis I), rotated every year.

Embedded questions or assignments or projects, and final exam scores

Core Math, Rigor 2, 5, 6

[*Every other year] In-class performance in one of two courses, from the list of pairs of courses below; each pair (area) is rotated in a repetitive cycle. Math 527, Math 528 (analysis); Math 510, Math 515 (applied math); Math 573, Math 575 (computational math); Math 505, Math 551 (algebra/discrete math); Math 525, Math 562 (geometry/topology); Math 541, Math 542 (probability/statistics)

Embedded questions or assignments or projects

Breadth 3

Count of the number of different areas successfully completed (B or better) by graduating Master’s students among the following six: {analysis, applied mathematics, computational mathematics, algebra and discrete mathematics, geometry and topology, probability and statistics}.

Three or more areas successfully completed will satisfy the SLO

Breadth 3

Evaluation of student’s performance in the oral exam on the subject of her/his project or thesis by graduate faculty committee


Depth, Rigor 4, 6


Use of Information: The data collected from the assessment measures will be summarized and reported to the Chair and the Assessment Coordinator, and, if warranted, used as a basis for further action.

Assessment Schedule for Graduate Program

The following is the time table for assessing student learning outcomes (SLOs) using the measures listed in the previous table. For the year 2015-2016, only three SLOs (corresponding to two assessment measures) were being assessed due to the fact that the assessment plan was developed and refined during the year and data were collected for only some of the measures.


SLO 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20

Qual. Exam

Qual. Exam

Qual. Exam

Qual. Exam

Qual. Exam

2, 5, 6 --

Math 504

Math 521

Math 504

Math 521

3 --

Math 527/528, Count


Math 510/515, Count


4, 6

Oral Exam

Oral Exam

Oral Exam

Oral Exam

Oral Exam