About Math @Knox
The Department of Mathematics offers a rigorous core curriculum that challenges students to think abstractly, recognize and generalize patterns, communicate ideas, and define and solve problems. In addition, mathematics students can explore exciting developments in this rapidly changing field through special topics courses and independent research in areas such as algebraic geometry, electoral forensics, game theory, and machine learning.
Mathematics students begin with a solid foundation in calculus, linear algebra, analysis, and abstract algebra, before proceeding to a variety of advanced courses and independent work. All Mathematics Majors are also required to finish an independent research project leading to a public presentation before they graduate. Some opt for a year-long honors project in the department instead. Recent research and honors projects have dealt with a wide array of topics such as measure theory and financial mathematics, analytic and numerical solutions to partial differential equations, machine-learning, survival analysis, and differential algebra. In addition, students have assisted with curriculum development projects centered around Mathematica, a computing environment for doing mathematics that is used extensively in introductory as well as advanced mathematics courses.
The department also offers a major in the area of Data Science. In recent years, with the advent of widely available, huge sets of data, it has become essential for students to have the necessary skills to turn data into information, and thereby, into action. Therefore the study of statistics has become more important than ever for an enlightened society. At completion students will be fluent in the two most popular data science programming languages, Python and the R Statistical Environment.
To supplement the major in Data Science, we also offer a minor in Statistics. We designed this minor to support the sciences at Knox College by providing our students with exposure to advanced analysis methods. This includes regularly planned courses in regression, ANOVA, probability theory, and statististical theory. In addition to these course, the statistics program faculty offer courses in statistical applications and techniques. To help our students actually do statistics and be able to use statistics as do professionals, the R Statistical Environment serves as the basis of statistical calculations and analyses.
Departmental Learning Goals
Students completing a course of study in the Department of Mathematics will be able to:
- reason logically and demonstrate complex problem-solving skills;
- demonstrate competency in the core of the discipline;
- communicate effectively in the language of the discipline; and
- demonstrate a knowledge of how to use technology to support investigation.