Skip to Navigation
    American University
  Jan 23, 2018
American University Catalog 2017-2018

Mathematics and Statistics

Chair  Stephen Casey

Full-time Faculty

Professor Emeritus  D. Crosby, A. Enayat, R. Holzsager, R. Jernigan, B. Korin, S. Schot
Professor  J. Adler, S. Casey, J. Gill, M. Gray, J. Hakim, M. Jackson, D. Kalman, J. Lansky, J. Nolan
David Carroll Professor  M. Baron
Associate Professor Emeritus  A. Barron, L. Crone, I.L. Chang, F. Van Dyke
Associate Professor  A. Elezi, J. Lu, E. Malloy, V. Stallings
Assistant Professor Emerita  C. Machlin
Assistant Professor  J. Chifman, K. Crona, J. Hartsfield, R.C. Mitchell, M. Robinson
Senior Professorial Lecturer  A. Kapatou, M. Limarzi, J. Miller, M. Pospieszelska
Professorial Lecturer  L. Bernhofen, A. Bourla, S. Carver, J. Dickens, D. Dietz, K. Duke, M. Keynes, A. Knapp, K. Ward
Instructor  H. Van Dyke
Director of Undergraduate Studies  R.C. Mitchell
Director of Mathematics and Statistics Academic Support  B. Jalali

Mathematics is one of the oldest branches of knowledge. It involves the logical study of structures, including numbers, shapes, spaces, and other systems, identifying patterns in these structures and analyzing how they change. Mathematics may be studied as an intellectual discipline for its own sake or as a professional tool for application to the problems of other disciplines. Majors in Mathematics (BS)  receive firm grounding in the theory and techniques of algebra, analysis, and other fields as a basis for further work in pure or applied mathematics and for graduate studies. The major in Applied Mathematics (BS)  offers training in mathematical problem-solving techniques. The program has a solid theoretical base, but emphasizes applications across the sciences to practical problems. Undergraduates majoring in mathematics may choose to take a second major in secondary school teaching.

Statistics is the science of making decisions based on data. Data and decisions can come from business, law, medicine, politics, science, sociology, and every other field of study, but may be based on incomplete observations or incorrect measurements. To mitigate such uncertainties, students studying statistics build and apply quantitative tools and techniques for the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation, and presentation of data. They then utilize statistical techniques to discover and investigate patterns, build predictive models, and control variability to improve decision making.

Undergraduate students majoring in Statistics (BS)  have two tracks available. Those who intend to continue with graduate work in statistics or those with an interest in the theory of statistical methods should follow the sequence for mathematical statistics, which requires a strong background in mathematics. Students wishing an emphasis in the use of statistical techniques should follow the sequence for applied statistics. This track is especially appropriate as a secondary emphasis for students who have a strong interest in a field of application. Students interested in the combination of statistical, mathematical, and computational tools that arise in the large-scale collection and analysis of data in industry should consider the data science track.

Computational Science (BS) [CAS/MATH]  is an emerging field in which computational simulation and modeling of systems are used to solve problems in engineering, and the physical, natural and social sciences. Students in this program take foundational courses in mathematics and computer science and choos application areas based on their interests.

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics combines the resources and knowledge of these related disciplines enabling the department to offer unusually varied and flexible programs.

The university's Washington, DC location affords the student access to many governmental, cultural, scientific, and historical institutions. These institutions serve as an important research resource. In addition, they are a source of full-time and part-time employment opportunities for students with a firm grounding in the mathematical sciences. Students who develop strong analytical and computational skills have career options in a wide variety of fields: government, industry, finance, consulting, teaching, and any area in which big data plays a role.

Special Opportunities

  • The department employs undergraduates in its tutoring lab and the computer labs.
  • The department offers an array of scholarships and research opportunities for talented students in mathematics and statistics.

Honors in Mathematical Sciences

The Honors in Mathematical Sciences  program is open to students who are majoring in Applied Mathematics (BS) , Mathematics (BS) , Statistics (BS) , Computational Science (BS) [CAS/MATH] , and Mathematics and Economics (BS) [CAS/MATH] .     


    Major Program (UG)Minor (UG)Certificate (UG)Master's Program (GR)Certificate (GR)