A Maths degree is great for you if you enjoy studying mathematics. Job prospects would mainly be finance related (Accounting, Banking and Data Science). However, it may also be IT-related (Computer Programming, Software Development). Further education is also a popular route for Maths graduates (Maths Teacher or Further Academic Research).
I’m unsure if I should do a Maths Degree!
Well, why do you want to do a Maths degree?
If you’re interested in mathematics and can’t see yourself studying any other subject then definitely do a maths degree. You don’t want to study something you aren’t sure about then realise you don’t like it half way through.
Lots of people drop out of university because they realise they’re studying the wrong course which is an expensive mistake (the more expensive the later you realise).
Degrees in any STEM subject are very valuable – of course some more than others.
What career can I have with a Maths Degree?
The career paths are HEAVILY financial-related. You can still technically get into computing or engineering related jobs but maths degrees prepare you for a future in finance or further academic research.
Students who want to pursue a career in finance and/or accounting will find that having a maths degree is very powerful.
There are an ABUNDANCE of finance jobs to choose from, just look at how many job posts there are in a 25-mile radius from London! Do you want the peace of mind of a guaranteed job with an excellent career ladder? A mathematics degree will definitely aid you on this path.
Are you a student that is good at mathematics and wants to carry on studying it in university but don’t want to go into finance? If so, then I might have some bad news for you…
If you want to have a career in engineering then find a field in engineering that interests you and study that instead. Postgraduate routes after a Maths Degree will be very limited in that sector.
IT / Computer Science
Do you want to have a career in IT or Programming but you also love maths? You can do a “Computer Science with Maths” degree. In a normal maths degree you do have the option of selecting programming modules but doing an IT / Programming degree would be better.
So, Just Finance?
There are lots of opportunities to get involved in whatever field you desire to pursue during your time at university regardless what degree you’re doing. However, this degree is geared towards making you a good candidate for a finance job.
If your aspiration is to code for google, don’t rely on the degree to get you into your dream job. You have to put in the extra effort, whether it be joining the coding society or making the coding society yourself.
What do you study in a Maths Degree?
The compulsory modules in every university are different. Have a look at these different universities’ first year modules.
In the first year of University, the teaching style and content DRASTICALLY changes to how you’re used to learning maths at school.
You might love it, or you might hate it.
The lecturers try their best at stripping back everything you’ve learnt, and start teaching you the basic concepts again.
There is a lot of crossover between different university’s maths modules.
Integrals work out areas under curves. That’s called “Single Integration”.
In university, you study double and triple integrals. The study of surfaces and volume!
What skills or characteristics do you need to study Maths at University?
- Good Communication (believe it or not)
Be prepared to spend a lot of time thinking.
I would compare the first few months of a maths degree to a philosophy degree. You REALLY have to THINK about the content. Lots of logical dilemmas arise when you do the courseworks. You have to take a step back and just think for as long as you need, which is something most maths students aren’t used to.
Normally you can do a ton of exam questions then the concept becomes clear to you, in degree maths however, before you start to answer the questions – the concepts require MUCH more time to digest and contemplate upon. There aren’t lots of past papers you can revise from and they don’t encourage you to do so.
This skill might shock you, but it’s true. The degree does require you to have good written and verbal communication skills. You will need to present your ideas/projects to your class for some courseworks.
Here’s what Zeeshan from Queen Mary University said:
For presentations – you don’t really need confidence. Your tutor will understand that some students find presenting more daunting than other students, but you should still be able to articulate your mathematical findings in a logical and resourceful way. I remember when I presented my coursework on Conditional Probability.Zeeshan Ahmed, mathematics student at queen mary university
I didn’t prepare as much as I should have, but I was able to pull off a presentation that I thought was decent.
Later that evening, I read the feedback my tutor gave me and I was embarrassed.
“Not good use of available space on board. Little-to-none of the mathematical ideas explained and not much depth. 6/10”.
Luckily it was a mock of the real presentation that was graded. After the feedback and a conversation about how he marks presentations I realised that I had to understand the content PROPERLY to be able to articulate it well. This is when I began to take the degree more seriously.
Intelligence – Do you need Further Maths A-Level?
If you have a passion for mathematics – no one should stop you from studying it. Lots of people that did only maths at A-Level become ahead of the students that did maths and further maths at A-Level just through sheer hard work.
However, the amount of modules and the variety of modules you will study in a maths degree is a bit overwhelming – especially when it comes to exam season. Doing any STEM degree, you need a special something about yourself to be motivated throughout the three / four years as the work becomes increasingly hard.
I’m still unsure if I should do a Maths Degree!
Is it a bit more clear if you should do a maths degree? If you’re still confused, ask any question you like on our forum.