About Studying Mathematics

Information for beginners

The information collected here is geared towards people interested in studying Mathematics with no undergraduate degree in Mathematics. If you are interested in pursuing a graduate degree (MSc/PhD) you will find the appropriate information for you under MSc Mathematics or Doctoral program.

Modern mathematics: full-of-tradition yet future-oriented

Mathematics belongs to the oldest scientific disciplines, its roots going back to antiquity. It has always attracted creative minds, who put all their energy into solving difficult problems in geometry, analysis, algebra, and number theory, and worked towards the fascinating scientific discipline we know today.

Many people believe that mathematics is a discipline out of touch with reality and only deals with problems that are irrelevant outside mathematics. This, however, is not at all true: mathematics is the foundation of natural sciences; it supplies an appropriate language for models that predict physical and chemical processes. Describing our environment through mathematics is no longer restricted to physics and chemistry: the combination of mathematical models, analytical procedures, and computational methods are the backbone of modern technologies and has proven itself in many disciplines, such as biology, finance, insurance, or economics. UNESCO consequently declared 2000 as the "Year of Mathematics".  Mathematics is an internationally-oriented discipline with many attractive possibilities to study abroad.

Studying at the faculty of mathematics

At the Faculty of Mathematics prospective students can take up the following studies:

  • The teacher-training program in mathematics (requiring a second teaching subject) prepares students to be mathematics teachers for secondary schools, including didactical and school-mathematics training in addition to a foundational education in mathematics.
  • The Bachelor's program in mathematics offers comprehensive training in pure and applied mathematics. After the Bachelor's degree, further mathematical training is possible by enrolling in a Master's or Doctoral program. The successful completion of the Bachelor's degree at the University of Vienna guarantees the possibility of enrolling in its Master's program in mathematics.

Organizational information and the relevant curricula are available on the webpage here, of the StudyServiceCenter Mathematics.

Studying at the faculty of mathematics is particularly student-friendly in several ways:

  • At the beginning of the studies, tutors hold workshops in which essential prerequisite knowledge from previous education is taught.
  • The variety and strength of the research groups at the Faculty of Mathematics enables students (especially for master and doctoral program) to specialize in numerous mathematical areas. The advanced curricula offer many possibilities to choose from.
  • The ratio between students and professors is very good, positively contributing to the learning environment at the Faculty.
  • Students are relatively free in determining dates for their examinations.

Career prospects for graduates in mathematics

The study programs of mathematics at the University of Vienna reflect the rich and diverse aspects of modern technologies (computer science, cryptography, genetics, biomathematics, semiconductor technology, etc.) and contemporary areas of interest (economics, statistics, mathematical finance), as well as the fundamental undertanding of the natural sciences (physics, chemistry) and philosophy (particularly logic).

It is this very diversity of applications that makes well-educated mathematicians universally useful; their analytical, precise thinking trained during their studies is simply irreplaceable. Studying mathematics is a real challenge, hence graduates are rarely found in unemployment statistics. Beside the more typical careers in teaching and research, new occupations requiring mathematical thinking are appearing all the time due to the universality and interdisciplinarity of mathematics: mathematicians design complex software applications, carry out simulations in mechanical engineering, calculate risk premiums for insurance companies, determine the value of financial contracts, optimize cable networks, plan production processes, produce statistical data, model the functioning of the brain, and research trends in economics.