Mathematics term papers

What is Mathematics?

The American Heritage Dictionary defines mathematics as “the study of the measurement, properties, and relationships of quantities, using numbers and symbols,” while the Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary defines it as “the science of numbers and their operations, interrelations, combinations, generalizations, and abstractions and of space configurations and their structure, measurement, transformations, and generalizations.”  Mathematics is generally simply referred to as math. 


History of Mathematics

Mathematics, or math, has an extensive history that spans back about as far as most other educational foundations that people study today, such as reading and different forms of writing.  Its development was approximately 5,000 years ago by Sumerians, although basic mathematical equations and the like were actually used significantly earlier than that.  Fordham University explains, “Mathematical discoveries have come both from the attempt to describe the natural world and from the desire to arrive at a form of inescapable truth from careful reasoning. These remain fruitful and important motivations for mathematical thinking, but in the last century mathematics has been successfully applied to many other aspects of the human world: voting trends in politics, the dating of ancient artifacts, the analysis of automobile traffic patterns, and long-term strategies for the sustainable harvest of deciduous forests, to mention a few.”


Majoring or Minoring in Mathematics

Depending on the educational institution chosen for the study of mathematics, a student may pursue a mathematics degree through either an undergraduate, graduate, or doctoral program.  In an undergraduate program, a student can choose to pursue mathematics as either a major, obtaining a Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics for either applied mathematics, theoretical mathematics, or general mathematics, or pursue the subject as a minor while working towards a Bachelor’s Degree in a different field.  On the graduate level, a student can pursue a Master’s in mathematics, while in a doctoral program, a student can work towards a Ph.D. in mathematics.


Career Opportunities for Mathematics Majors

Mathematics majors have a variety of careers available to them.  In fact, mathematics majors are among some of the highest paid college graduates in today’s society and are also in extremely high demand.  Some of these career fields include teaching (although not so high paying, this career has an extremely large growth rate and great job satisfaction), finance, actuarial science, cryptography, computer science, biomathematics, operations research, mathematical biology, state or government work, or researcher.    

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