United States Air Force Academy

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Harnessing Abstract and Critical Thinking

MATHEMATICS

The Mathematics and Applied Mathematics programs offer an education in problem solving, analytic reasoning, critical thinking, and technical communication. These skills prepare cadets to handle the complex operational, managerial, social, scientific, engineering, and other technical problems that Air Force and Space Force officers encounter on a routine basis. Both majors also provide a superior education that facilitates success in a wide variety of graduate school programs including operations research, physics, engineering, business administration, economics, computer science, law, medicine, meteorology, and, of course, mathematics and applied mathematics.

More specifically, the Mathematics degree focuses on classical and modern mathematics while leaving flexibility for cadets to tailor a program that meets individual interests. The degree stresses problem solving, logic and abstract reasoning while also providing exposure to various modern applications of mathematics to include cryptography, machine learning, operations research, and data science.

The Applied Mathematics degree also provides a solid foundation in diverse mathematical topics but applies that foundation to related disciplines. The hallmark of the Applied Mathematics degree is a focused four-course interdisciplinary concentration coordinated with another academic discipline. This blending of higher-level mathematics with a solid foundation in another discipline offers significant benefits in terms of career and graduate school opportunities.

POTENTIAL JOB ASSIGNMENTS
Within the Air Force
  • 11X – Pilot
  • 13X – Space, Nuclear, and Missile Operations & Command and Control
  • 14X – Intelligence officer
  • 15A – Operations Research Analyst
  • 17X – Cyberspace Operations
  • 18X – Remotely Piloted Aircraft
  • 63AX – Acquisition Manager
  • 65XX – Financial Management
  • 71SX – Special Investigator
Careers Outside the Air Force
  • Academia
  • Actuary
  • Animator
  • Attorney
  • Biostatistician
  • Budget Analyst
  • Cartographer
  • Climatologist
  • Computational Biologist
  • Computer Scientist
  • Cryptanalyst
  • Data Scientist
  • Economist
  • Epidemiologist
  • Forensic Analyst
  • Market Research Analyst
  • Medical Scientist
  • National Security Analyst
  • Ops Research Analyst
  • Psychometrician
  • Software Engineer
  • Statistician
  • Urban Planner
RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES
  • Cadets have a wide range of opportunities to conduct summer research internships with Air Force offices or private companies. Past research experiences have included internships with the Air Force Research Laboratory, the National Reconnaissance Office, the National Security Agency, Los Alamos National Lab, Sandia Lab, and MIT Lincoln Laboratory.
  • Cadets in the Math Capstone Experience (Math 420/421) can do research in wide variety of fields related to mathematics including pure mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics, data science, operations research, and interdisciplinary studies with other departments including physics, engineering, biology, chemistry, and economics.
SUGGESTED COURSE SEQUENCE
Mathematics
4th CLASS YEAR (FRESHMAN) 3RD CLASS YEAR (SOPHOMORE) 2ND CLASS YEAR (JUNIOR) 1ST CLASS YEAR (SENIOR)
Beh Sci 110
Com Sci 110
For Lang 1
History 100
Math 141
Chem 100
English 111
For Lang 2
Math 142
Physics 110
Leadership 100
Math 243
Econ 201
English 211
MSS 521
Phys 215
CompSci 211
Math 320
Math 245
Bio 215
Law 220
Pol Sci 211
Leadership 200
Math 360
Mech Engr 200
ECE 315
Math 377
History 300
Math 366
Math 378
Math Option
Philos 310
Aero Engr 315
Leadership 300
Math Option
Math Option
Math 420
Math 465
Sociocultural Option
Soc Sci 311
Math Option
Math Option
Math Option
Math Option
Math 421
Astro Engr 310
Leadership 400

Applied Mathematics
4th CLASS YEAR (FRESHMAN) 3RD CLASS YEAR (SOPHOMORE) 2ND CLASS YEAR (JUNIOR) 1ST CLASS YEAR (SENIOR)
Beh Sci 110
Com Sci 110
For Lang 1
History 100
Math 141
Chem 100
English 111
For Lang 2
Math 142
Physics 110
Leadership 100
Math 243
Econ 201
English 211
MSS 521
Physics 215
Comp Sci 211
Math 320
Math 245
Bio 215
Law 220
Pol Sci 211
Leadership 200
Math 360
Interdisciplinary 1
Mech Engr 200
ECE 315
Math 377
Math 366
Math 378
History 300
Philos 310
Aero Engr 315
Leadership 300
Interdisciplinary 2
Math 420
Math 342
Math Option
Sociocultural Option
Soc Sci 311
Math Option
Math Option
Math 421
Interdisciplinary 3
Interdisciplinary 4
Astro Engr 310
Leadership 400

Additional information on the Mathematics major, as well as any of the above listed courses, can be found in the Curriculum Handbook.


The only thing certain in the next 10 years is change. Your interests will change, technology will change and our world will change. The flexibility inherent in a mathematics degree allows you to keep your options open until you’re ready to exercise them.

 

Kunselman The program has allowed me to build a problem-solving foundation which will help me to tackle any problem that I will face.

Math is so much more than computations, and if you are looking for a challenging program which will equip you with the tools to think critically about everything from philosophy to engineering, then I highly recommend becoming a math major.

Courtney Kunselman – Class of 2018
Major: Applied Mathematics with a concentration in Materials Chemistry

Wagner DFMS is an awesome community. It’s a small group of students and an amazing collection of instructors and professors who are really passionate about math, and putting it to use in many different ways!

You’ll find pure theoreticians working on the fundamental structures of algebra, statisticians who could easily beat your fantasy football team, and tons of others curious about how to use math to better understand biology, physics, aeronautics, and practically anything else. I fell in love with the major because there was never a lack of things to explore, or new things to try.

David Wagner – Class of 2017
Major: Applied Mathematics with a concentration in Aeronautical Engineering

VALIDATION AND TRANSFER CREDITS

Contact the Department of Mathematical Sciences regarding course validation and transfer credits from other universities.

CONTACT US

For questions about Mathematics and Applied Mathematics Majors:
Dr. Beth Schaubroeck
Professor
beth.schaubroeck@afacademy.af.edu
(719) 333-4470

JOB OPPORTUNITIES

DFMS Personnel Officer
2354 Fairchild Drive, Suite 6D102
USAF Academy, CO 80840
(719) 333-4470
DFMS_Personnel@usafa.edu

For all other questions:
DFMS Executive Officer
DFMS_exec@usafa.edu
(719) 333-4470

 

Math Majors and Faculty at the 2020 Pikes Peak Regional Undergraduate Mathematics Conference at CSU – Pueblo

Math Majors and Faculty at the 2020 Pikes Peak Regional Undergraduate Mathematics Conference at CSU – Pueblo

WANT TO STUDY MATHEMATICS?