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Key Infor­ma­tion:

  • Math­e­mat­ics degrees open up oppor­tu­ni­ties in diverse fields such as engi­neer­ing, research, and data analy­sis.
  • Stu­dents can choose between a Bach­e­lor of Arts (BA) or a Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence (BS) in math­e­mat­ics, with the BS focus­ing more on sci­ence and tech­ni­cal courses.
  • Many rep­utable col­leges offer online math­e­mat­ics degrees, pro­vid­ing flex­i­bil­i­ty and acces­si­bil­i­ty for students.
  • It’s cru­cial to choose pro­grams that are accred­it­ed to ensure the edu­ca­tion meets high standards.

Are you think­ing about begin­ning a math degree? You may be won­der­ing, what is a math­e­mati­cian, any­way, and what does a math­e­mati­cian do? The typ­i­cal image many peo­ple think of when pic­tur­ing a math­e­mati­cian is of a per­son in a cubi­cle, fran­ti­cal­ly mak­ing cal­cu­la­tions, and sweat­ing. But this stereo­typ­i­cal image is far from real­i­ty. A career in math­e­mat­ics is much more inter­est­ing and var­ied. A mathematician’s job descrip­tion often includes a wide range of duties, which can vary accord­ing to their par­tic­u­lar posi­tion, though many math­e­mati­cians work for busi­ness­es, gov­ern­ment, engi­neer­ing, and research fields. Their work is high­ly prized because it enables busi­ness deci­sions to be made with con­fi­dence, because they were made based on actu­al data.

What Does a Mathematician Do?

What does a math­e­mati­cian do for a liv­ing? There are var­i­ous career fields open to math­e­mati­cians – includ­ing astron­o­my and space explo­ration, cli­mate study, med­i­cine, nation­al secu­ri­ty, robot­ics, ani­mat­ed films, and busi­ness posi­tions. Per­haps the idea of becom­ing a math­e­mati­cian excites you, so the next nat­ur­al ques­tion becomes, “how do I become a math­e­mati­cian?” The first step is to pur­sue get­ting your bachelor’s degree in mathematics.

What does a math­e­mati­cian do, many peo­ple ask cur­rent and prospec­tive math­e­mati­cians. What is a math­e­mati­cian, exact­ly? Their work isn’t near­ly as vis­i­ble as that of doc­tors, fire­fight­ers, and jour­nal­ists. Well, one answer that many peo­ple will relate to is they make it pos­si­ble to send secure emails and to buy things secure­ly online. Math­e­mati­cians were essen­tial dur­ing the com­ple­tion of The Human Genome Project because their effi­cient algo­rithms made it so it could be com­plet­ed in a rea­son­able amount of time. Math­e­mati­cian job descrip­tions inevitably include pro­fi­cien­cy in the abil­i­ty to ana­lyze and make con­clu­sions from com­plex data points and to com­mu­ni­cate their find­ings clearly.

Math­e­mat­ics stu­dents may choose elec­tives and dou­ble majors or minors to earn spe­cial­iza­tions that have more real-world appli­ca­tions in com­put­er sci­ence, nat­ur­al sci­ence, health­care, and more:

  • data sci­ence
  • data ana­lyt­ics
  • math­e­mat­i­cal modeling
  • soft­ware engineering

Of course, even applied math­e­mat­ics is built on a foun­da­tion of math­e­mat­ics cours­es including:

  • dif­fer­en­tial equations
  • abstract alge­bra
  • lin­ear algebra
  • math­e­mat­i­cal concepts
  • dis­crete mathematics
  • num­ber theory
  • graphs
  • deriv­a­tives

The depart­ment of math­e­mat­ics may seem far from a social sci­ences or lib­er­al arts degree, but the prob­lem-solv­ing skills a math major learns can apply in many areas. Job growth can be even greater with a master’s degree from a grad­u­ate school.

Every­one in today’s mod­ern soci­ety is ben­e­fit­ed from the work math­e­mati­cians do, and their impor­tance will only con­tin­ue to increase as time goes on. So, what does a math­e­mati­cian do for a liv­ing? The short answer is, make an impact on the world around them. Now that you’re inspired by the idea of becom­ing a math­e­mati­cian, you’re prob­a­bly ask­ing, “how do I become a math­e­mati­cian?” Now is the ide­al time to start research­ing and apply­ing to bachelor’s in math­e­mat­ics pro­grams to get your career start­ed on the right foot.

Accreditation for Mathematics Programs

One of the most impor­tant deci­sions you will make before begin­ning your career as a math­e­mati­cian is decid­ing where to obtain your bachelor’s degree from. There are plen­ty of options to choose from accord­ing to your loca­tion and spe­cial­ty pref­er­ences. Whichev­er pro­grams you decide to apply to, it’s absolute­ly essen­tial that you make sure you pick pro­grams that are accred­it­ed. Accred­i­ta­tion means that the school and the math­e­mat­ics pro­gram specif­i­cal­ly has been care­ful­ly ana­lyzed and con­clud­ed to meet high stan­dards. It means that when you enter that math­e­mat­ics pro­gram, you’ll be able to rest assured that you’ll learn valu­able skills that will serve you well dur­ing your career in math­e­mat­ics and beyond. Accred­i­ta­tion is real­ly valu­able, and not all schools with bachelor’s in math­e­mat­ics pro­grams have it, so make sure any pro­grams you apply to are accred­it­ed by one or more region­al organizations.

What are the best col­leges for math? There are so many options to choose from for the best math majors col­lege that the deci­sion to pick just a few to apply to an feel daunt­ing. A list of the best col­leges for math can be found here. This list includes the Mass­a­chu­setts Insti­tute of Tech­nol­o­gy (MIT), Har­vard Uni­ver­si­ty, Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty, Uni­ver­si­ty of Oxford, Cam­bridge Uni­ver­si­ty, Prince­ton Uni­ver­si­ty, Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia – Berke­ley, Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia – Los Ange­les, Cal­i­for­nia Insti­tute of Tech­nol­o­gy, and New York University.

Which school is the best col­lege for math­e­mat­ics? Any of these top 10 schools are wise choic­es, but the real answer depends on each individual’s pref­er­ences, finan­cial cri­te­ria, and geo­graph­ic region. The best col­lege for math­e­mat­ics lies in the eye of the behold­er. It real­ly depends on each student’s priorities.

Region­al accred­i­ta­tion is a great barom­e­ter for rank­ing the best math­e­mat­ics col­leges. If a par­tic­u­lar pro­gram is accred­it­ed, you’ll be able to rest assured that the skills taught there are sol­id and will serve you well in your career. The 6 region­al accred­it­ing agen­cies for the best math­e­mat­ics col­leges include Mid­dle States Com­mis­sion of High­er Edu­ca­tion (MSCHE), Com­mis­sion on Col­leges and Uni­ver­si­ties (NWCCU), New Eng­land Com­mis­sion on High­er Edu­ca­tion (NECHE), South­ern Asso­ci­a­tion of Col­leges and Schools Com­mis­sion on Col­leges (SACSOC), the High­er Learn­ing Com­mis­sion (HLC), North­west, and WASC Senior Col­lege and Uni­ver­si­ty Com­mis­sion (WSCUC). The best math majors col­lege should be accred­it­ed by one or var­i­ous of these rep­utable organizations.

To eval­u­ate what are the best schools for math­e­mat­ics, it helps to get clear about what things are most impor­tant to you. Rep­u­ta­tion? Cost? Con­ve­nience (online/in-per­son­/hy­brid pro­gram?), net­work oppor­tu­ni­ties, pro­fes­sor cre­den­tials? The best schools for math­e­mat­ics is not a one-size-fits-all deter­mi­na­tion. Each per­son will need to deter­mine their own stan­dards and pick pro­grams that fit them.

Types of Mathematics Bachelor’s Degrees

Prospec­tive stu­dents need to fig­ure out whether they’d like to pur­sue a BS or BA in math­e­mat­ics. BA stands for bach­e­lor of arts and BS stands for bach­e­lor of sci­ence in math­e­mat­ics. The math­e­mat­ics course­work is essen­tial­ly the same for both degree pro­grams, but the bach­e­lor of arts requires stu­dents to com­plete more human­i­ties class­es. BS stu­dents focus more on sci­ence and lab­o­ra­to­ry coursework.

Online degrees in math­e­mat­ics are excel­lent because they offer the con­ve­nience as well as the high cal­iber qual­i­ty of in-per­son pro­grams. Online math­e­mat­ics degrees can be attained from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Mary­land Glob­al Cam­pus, South­ern New Hamp­shire Uni­ver­si­ty, UMass Low­ell, and many oth­er fan­tas­tic schools. A help­ful guide to the most afford­able online math­e­mat­ics degrees can be found here. Top pro­grams for online math­e­mat­ics degrees includ­ed in this list are East­ern New Mex­i­co Uni­ver­si­ty-Main Cam­pus, Cen­tral Methodist Uni­ver­si­ty, Amer­i­can Pub­lic Uni­ver­si­ty Sys­tem, Uni­ver­si­ty of Arkansas at Lit­tle Rock, and Chadron State Col­lege. Math­e­mat­ics degrees online pro­grams don’t have to be expen­sive – the low­est cost option, from East­ern New Mex­i­co Uni­ver­si­ty, costs just $7,492 per year. Even the most expen­sive col­lege includ­ed on this list – Mer­cy Col­lege – costs just $18,934. When peo­ple con­sid­er the career boost they will receive after earn­ing one of the math­e­mat­ics degrees online, it’s cer­tain­ly worth the invest­ment of time, ener­gy, and finan­cial resources.

With an online math­e­mat­ics degree on your resume, you’ll be more attrac­tive to poten­tial employ­ers. The best math­e­mat­ics pro­grams are often avail­able online for your con­ve­nience. You’ll be able to send the kids off to school and day­care, grab a cup of cof­fee, and buck­le down to achieve the next big step in your career. Or if you’re more of a night owl, you can go through your evening rou­tine with your fam­i­ly and once the house is still, start up your com­put­er and get to learn­ing key math­e­mat­ics prin­ci­ples – what­ev­er works for you! The best math­e­mat­ics pro­grams fit into your sched­ule, spe­cial­ty pref­er­ences, and get you excit­ed about math­e­mat­ics again.

What are the best math degrees? What are the most in-demand fields today? The best math degrees, which can often be attained online, include asso­ciate degree in math­e­mat­ics, bachelor’s in math­e­mat­ics (BS or BA), Mas­ter of Math­e­mat­ics, and PhD of Mathematics.

So what kind of math degree pro­grams should you apply to? The best math degree you could pur­sue is one that will imme­di­ate­ly be use­ful to you in your cur­rent posi­tion. The best math­e­mat­ics degree will also enhance your resume so you can apply to bet­ter-pay­ing, more ful­fill­ing jobs. Start research­ing and apply to a few pro­grams now – it doesn’t mean you have to com­mit to any one just yet. Per­haps you’ll receive a schol­ar­ship, finan­cial aid, or the sched­ule of the pro­gram will per­fect­ly match your needs – but you won’t know until you gath­er all the per­ti­nent infor­ma­tion! Knowl­edge is power.

Certifications in Math and Statistics

Peo­ple who are already pro­fes­sion­als, or who would sim­ply like to enhance their career path with a cer­tifi­cate in math­e­mat­ics, would be wise to pur­sue an online or in-per­son pro­gram. There are plen­ty of online cer­tifi­cate in math­e­mat­ics options avail­able to prospec­tive stu­dents at in-demand schools such as Uni­ver­si­ty of Wis­con­sin-Madi­son, Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty East, Cam­bridge Col­lege, Les­ley Uni­ver­si­ty, and more. Cer­tifi­cates in math­e­mat­ics are excel­lent invest­ments because they’re often much less expen­sive and less time-con­sum­ing than degree pro­grams. Cer­tifi­cates in math­e­mat­ics pro­vide much-need­ed skills stu­dents are often able to uti­lize in their work­places right away. Types of math­e­mat­ics cer­tifi­cates peo­ple can apply for include math­e­mat­ics spe­cial­ist, math teacher, and online grad­u­ate cer­tifi­cate in mathematics.

For instance, the math­e­mat­ics cer­tifi­cates pro­gram at Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty is an excel­lent pro­gram designed to enhance the careers of high school teach­ers who would like to be qual­i­fied to teach Advanced Place­ment cours­es, or stu­dents who plan to apply for a grad­u­ate study pro­gram in math­e­mat­ics at some point in the near future. Indi­ana University’s math­e­mat­ics cer­tifi­cate online pro­gram requires the com­ple­tion of analy­sis, alge­bra, topol­o­gy, appli­ca­tions, and probability/statistics course­work. This online math­e­mat­ics cer­tifi­cate pro­gram is flex­i­ble, afford­able, and rig­or­ous to deliv­er an amaz­ing return on investment.

Anoth­er online math­e­mat­ics cer­tifi­cate pro­gram that peo­ple find ben­e­fi­cial is the Advanced Cer­tifi­cate in Math from St. John’s Col­lege. This school offers 2 choic­es for online cer­tifi­cate in math­e­mat­ics pro­grams – Math­e­mat­ics Edu­ca­tion Advanced Cer­tifi­cate and Applied Behav­ioral Analy­sis Cer­tifi­cate. With an online cer­tifi­cate in math­e­mat­ics degree in hand from St. John’s Col­lege or anoth­er accred­it­ed degree pro­gram, you’ll have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to take your career to a whole new lev­el. The Math­e­mat­ics Edu­ca­tion Advanced Cer­tifi­cate is an ide­al pro­gram for mid­dle and high school math­e­mat­ics teach­ers who want to ensure they have the best skills and knowl­edge for teach­ing math con­cepts the most effec­tive­ly. Grad­u­ate cer­tifi­cate in math­e­mat­ics, like the pro­grams offered from St. John’s Col­lege, are such wor­thy invest­ments for teach­ers at mid­dle and high school levels.

Con­sid­er­ing whether a cer­ti­fi­ca­tion in math­e­mat­ics could be right for you? Sure, get­ting a cer­ti­fi­ca­tion in math­e­mat­ics requires a con­sid­er­able invest­ment of finan­cial resources, time, and effort, but the ben­e­fits far out­weigh any risks – espe­cial­ly if it’s an online pro­gram. With a math­e­mat­ics cer­ti­fi­ca­tion online in hand, you’re going to look so good to poten­tial employ­ers and who knows – you might even get a raise at your cur­rent job! There are plen­ty of dif­fer­ent math­e­mat­ics cer­ti­fi­ca­tion online pro­grams to choose from accord­ing to your pref­er­ences and inter­ests, so start research­ing a bunch and apply to a few today!

Careers with a Math Degree

Once you have your math­e­mat­ics degree in hand, what kinds of jobs for math majors will be made avail­able to you? What are the best jobs with a math degree that grad­u­ates can antic­i­pate? Are there lots of jobs for math majors in gov­ern­ment? How about your finan­cial out­look – what are the most high-pay­ing jobs for math majors? There are plen­ty of jobs for a math­e­mati­cian that you will be qual­i­fied for upon grad­u­a­tion from an online bachelor’s degree pro­gram. Jobs for math majors can include accoun­tant, actu­ary, bud­get ana­lyst, econ­o­mist, engi­neer, logis­ti­cian, math­e­mati­cian, oper­a­tions research ana­lyst, and sta­tis­ti­cian. Careers for math majors are often ful­fill­ing and lucra­tive. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Sta­tis­tics (BLS) expects a growth rate of 21% between 2014–2024. High-earn­ing job oppor­tu­ni­ties for math majors include actu­ar­i­al sci­ence, bio­math­e­mat­ics, bio­sta­tis­tics, cryp­tog­ra­phy, the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment, oper­a­tions research analy­sis, quan­ti­ta­tive finance, and sta­tis­tics posi­tions. Search online for job oppor­tu­ni­ties for math majors in your city, and you’ll quick­ly see how abun­dant entry-lev­el math­e­mati­cian jobs are. There are so many careers for math majors that are open to grad­u­ates of bachelor’s, master’s, and PhD pro­grams at top schools.

Show me the mon­ey! What are the high­est pay­ing jobs for math majors? This is a smart ques­tion to ask before invest­ing in a degree pro­gram, though the answer varies wide­ly. Entry-lev­el math­e­mati­cians jobs that pay well are avail­able in so many indus­tries includ­ing avi­a­tion, com­mu­ni­ca­tions, sci­ence, tech­nol­o­gy, finance, mar­ket research, and more. Careers for a math major are so var­ied – there are so many math­e­mat­ics major jobs that you’ll be eli­gi­ble to apply to upon grad­u­a­tion – so a degree in math­e­mat­ics is a wise invest­ment for all kinds of go-get­ters. As long as you’re will­ing to put your­self out there and do the work to acquire one of the best jobs for a math major, you’ll have an incred­i­ble, mul­ti-decade career. Even entry-lev­el jobs for math majors are sur­pris­ing­ly well-paid and easy to find in many major cities. Sure, a degree pro­gram involves plen­ty of time and hard work, but the ben­e­fits of careers for a math major usu­al­ly prove to be worth it.

Best math degree jobs can only be deter­mined accord­ing to your require­ments and pref­er­ences. High­est pay­ing jobs for math majors include math­e­mati­cian, sta­tis­ti­cian, and col­lege math pro­fes­sor. While these math­e­mati­cian jobs might not be avail­able to those who only have bachelor’s degrees, entry-lev­el jobs for math majors are already sur­pris­ing­ly abun­dant and well-paid. You could think of earn­ing your bachelor’s degree as a step­ping stone to boost your career to new heights.

Jobs for math majors in gov­ern­ment aren’t hard to find. Search online in your city for jobs for math majors in gov­ern­ment and var­i­ous posi­tions will pop up right away. Fed­er­al gov­ern­ment jobs for math majors pro­vide excel­lent ben­e­fits and sta­bil­i­ty, and they often pay well, too. Check out these help­ful sta­tis­tics about the var­i­ous depart­ment fed­er­al gov­ern­ment jobs for math majors. Jobs for a math major work­ing for local, state, and fed­er­al gov­ern­ment are always look­ing for qual­i­fied can­di­dates, which you will be upon grad­u­a­tion. Best math degree jobs include gov­ern­ment posi­tions, as well and pri­vate sec­tor positions.

How about jobs for applied math majors? Jobs for applied math majors are also abun­dant – jobs for a math­e­mati­cian with a spe­cial­ty in applied math include sys­tems biol­o­gy, finance and eco­nom­ics, ecology/epidemiology, data min­ing and data pri­va­cy, mate­ri­als sci­ence, dig­i­tal imag­ing, cli­ma­tol­ogy, and more. Math­e­mat­ics major jobs with a spe­cial­ty in applied math are plen­ti­ful in both the pri­vate and pub­lic sec­tor today.

Best jobs for a math major don’t always need to have math in the title field. Com­put­er sci­en­tist, engi­neers, and oth­er career paths often require the same skills as math-cen­tered jobs, make sure you cast a wide net when you’re ready to apply to jobs for a math­e­mat­ics degree. Set your­self apart from the field of can­di­dates and get one of the best jobs with a math­e­mat­ics degree when you remem­ber that you have plen­ty of trans­ferrable skills upon grad­u­a­tion from a rep­utable pro­gram. There are plen­ty of good jobs for math majors avail­able now… and by the time you grad­u­ate, the demand for excel­lent math­e­mati­cians will like­ly increase!

Won­der­ing about finance jobs for math majors? The finance indus­try is boom­ing in many parts of the world these days, and finance jobs for math majors are abun­dant in many cities. Finan­cial ana­lyst is one of the good jobs for math majors. Arguably, the best jobs with a math­e­mat­ics degree can be found in the world of finance. High-pay­ing jobs for math majors include posi­tions found in finance. Google job open­ings for math majors in your city and you’ll most like­ly find a wide range of options. Upon grad­u­a­tion, get ready to apply for job open­ings for math majors that most inter­est you.

In a few years, depend­ing on whether you enter a full or part-time math­e­mat­ics pro­gram, you’ll grad­u­ate and turn your gaze to your first job as a math­e­mati­cian. What will you find are the best jobs with a math degree? It real­ly depends on what your inter­ests may be, but the good news is that there’s demand for math­e­mati­cians in many dif­fer­ent sec­tors of soci­ety, so there’s some­thing for just about every­one. Even peo­ple who just grad­u­ate can often find jobs for math majors with no expe­ri­ence. To find jobs for math majors with no expe­ri­ence, it’s a good idea to net­work with alum­ni from your school. Hav­ing an “in” can be real­ly help­ful when look­ing for jobs for a degree in math­e­mat­ics in your par­tic­u­lar city.

Deter­min­ing what are best jobs for math majors is tricky because each per­son has their own cri­te­ria. What one per­son con­sid­ers their “dream job” – one of the best jobs for math majors – would feel like drudgery to anoth­er can­di­date. The good news is that top jobs for math majors are easy to find and nar­row down accord­ing to your per­son­al cri­te­ria. Top jobs for math majors in your area could be in the pri­vate or pub­lic sec­tor, in the research or finance indus­try (or a host of oth­ers), and have wide salary ranges. There are copi­ous jobs for a math­e­mat­ics degree these days – before enter­ing a degree pro­gram, why don’t you search “jobs for a degree in math­e­mat­ics in [your city]” and you’ll be thrilled with the pos­si­bil­i­ties that pop up. Then the dif­fi­cult part will be just nar­row­ing own the field of jobs for a math­e­mat­ics degree that you intend to pur­sue upon grad­u­a­tion. There’s a wide range of jobs for a degree in math­e­mat­ics avail­able to grad­u­ates, so begin­ning to earn a degree in math­e­mat­ics is a wise choice.

Salary of Mathematics Majors

How much mon­ey does a math­e­mati­cian make? What is a math major salary? What are typ­i­cal math major salaries in var­i­ous indus­tries? These are FAQs many prospec­tive stu­dents ask. An aver­age salary for a math­e­mati­cian varies from indus­try to indus­try and city to city. Before begin­ning a degree pro­gram, it’s a wise idea to spend a few min­utes search­ing online for “how much mon­ey does a math­e­mati­cian make in [spe­cial­ty area] in [your city]?” An aver­age salary for a math­e­mati­cian is high­er than many oth­er pro­fes­sion­als – the Bureau of Labor Sta­tis­tics reports an aver­age math major salary to be $103,000 (though this may require more advanced degrees than just bachelor’s). Math­e­mati­cians in the pri­vate and pub­lic sec­tor can make lucra­tive salaries – with an aver­age salary for math­e­mati­cians at about $103,000 annu­al­ly. Sta­tis­ti­cians can expect to earn an aver­age salary for math­e­mati­cians of about $84,060, and a col­lege math pro­fes­sor can expect to earn a math­e­mati­cian salary of about $76,000 annually.

So, you ask, how much mon­ey do math­e­mati­cians make? The answer real­ly depends on the indus­try you end up work­ing in. Many math major salaries vary from job to job. There isn’t a uni­ver­sal answer to the ques­tion, “how much do math­e­mati­cians make?” Per­haps it would be smart to ask a few peo­ple in your city the ques­tion, “how much do math­e­mati­cians make?” You may notice some hes­i­ta­tion in their voic­es, because there is a big range. A salary of a math­e­mati­cian is vari­able accord­ing to a pletho­ra of fac­tors. Math majors’ salary ranges can eas­i­ly be found online – just make sure you search for math­e­mati­cian salary and fil­ter results accord­ing to your desired indus­try in your area of the coun­try. Usu­al­ly, the salary of a math­e­mati­cian is high­er than oth­er industries.

How much mon­ey do math­e­mati­cians make? The answer isn’t very sim­ple, but a range can be found with­out too much time or effort. Math major jobs salary ranges are pro­ject­ed to increase as time goes on. Math majors’ salary ranges lead to com­fort­able, pros­per­ous lifestyles. Math­e­mati­cian salaries are usu­al­ly gen­er­ous, and many posi­tions include relo­ca­tion costs, if need­ed. It’s smart to research math major jobs salary para­me­ters before begin­ning a degree pro­gram. You’ll be pleased with what you see for math­e­mati­cian salaries in your area!

Relat­ed Rankings: 

25 Best Bach­e­lor’s in Mathematics

15 Best Online Bach­e­lor’s in Mathematics

10 Most Afford­able Bach­e­lor’s in Mathematics

10 Fastest Online Bach­e­lor’s in Mathematics

15 Best Online Actu­ary Degree