Mathematics and Computer Science

Mathematics Website:

Computer Science Website:

Associate Professor Drinen, Chair

Professor F. Croom

Professor Parrish

Professor J. Cunningham

Professor Lankewicz

Professor Cavagnaro

Professor Puckette

Professor Swallow

Professor Dale

Associate Professor Carl, Program Director of Computer Science

Associate Professor Rudd

Brown Foundation Fellow and Visiting Professor Banchoff

Visiting Assistant Professor Craft

Visiting Assistant Professor Bateman

The department offers two majors: mathematics and computer science. A student majoring in mathematics or computer science must present nineteen full course credits (seventy-six hours) from outside the major field. A student with a double major in the department must take a comprehensive exam in each major, and must take twelve full course credits (forty-eight hours) outside the major field.

Major in mathematics: The standard entry-level course is Mathematics 101 (Calculus I). Students entering Sewanee with a strong background in mathematics may be invited to enroll in Mathematics 102 (Calculus II), Mathematics 207 (Multidimensional Calculus), or a more advanced mathematics course.

A major in mathematics must successfully complete the equivalent of Mathematics 101, 102, 207, 210, 215, and successfully complete the following two requirements:

1) Six advanced mathematics courses selected from differential equations and mathematics courses numbered 300 or above. Math 444 may only be used in fulfillment of the mathematics major requirements with the advance approval of the instructor. These courses must include:

a) One course from two of the following three areas: abstract algebra or algebraic number theory, real analysis or complex analysis, topology.

b) One two-course sequence selected from the following: abstract algebra, analysis, topology, probability and statistics.

2) The comprehensive exam in mathematics has three parts: a written exam covering Calculus I, Calculus II, Mathematics 207, 210, and 215 which students are expected to take at the beginning of their junior year; the senior talk; and an oral exam taken during the senior year.

Majors are strongly encouraged to take Computer Science 157.

A mathematics major with an average of at least 3.5 in mathematics courses numbered 200 and higher may elect to apply for departmental honors. Those who complete an independent study project and a paper approved by the faculty, present the paper in public, and earn an honors grade (B+ or higher) on the comprehensive examination receive departmental honors at graduation.

Major in computer science: A major in computer science must take the introductory courses — Computer Science 157, 257, 270; advanced courses — Computer Science 320, 284, 428; and three elective courses chosen from among the computer science courses numbered above 270 to be selected in consultation with the departmental advisor. Mathematics 301, which emphasizes both numerical and symbolic computing, may serve as one of the required computer science elective courses. In addition, computer science majors must take Mathematics 101, 215, and one additional mathematics or statistics course numbered 102 or higher. With the permission of the department, students who are well prepared may begin their computer science sequence with Computer Science 257.

Departmental honors may be conferred on students considered worthy of distinction. Most of the following accomplishments are generally expected:

1) an average of at least 3.5 in computer science courses numbered 300 and higher;

2) a superior performance on both the written and oral comprehensive examination;

3) an original project, usually as part of a 444 computer science elective course, and oral defense or presentation of the work;

4) additional course work in computer science beyond the minimum requirement.

3/2 Engineering Program Majors: Both Mathematics and Computer Science are options in the pre-professional 3/2 Engineering Program. The major in each case is slightly abbreviated to accommodate a student’s shortened time at Sewanee. In each case the major is completed during the subsequent two years of study at the relevant engineering institution. Scheduling of courses during the three years at Sewanee is often complex. Students should consult departmental advisers within their major of interest in their first year to avoid scheduling conflicts.

Common Requirements of both computer science and mathematics 3/2 engineering majors: A student must complete all core curriculum requirements of the college. A comprehensive examination is not required for a 3/2 engineering major. For both mathematics and computer science tracks the following are required.

• Chemistry 101 and 102: General Chemistry I and II
• Physics 101 and 102: General Physics I and II
• Computer Science 157: Introduction to Modeling and Programming
• Mathematics 101, 102, and 207 (the Calculus sequence I, II, Multidimensional)
• Mathematics 212: Differential Equations
• Mathematics 215: Discrete Mathematical Structures

In addition, a 3/2 engineering major in computer science must also take the following eight courses.

• Computer Science 257: Data Structures
• Computer Science 270: Computer Organization
• Computer Science 320: Analysis of Algorithms
• Computer Science 428: Operating Systems
• one elective course chosen from computer science courses numbered 300 or above
• three advanced courses in computer science or computer engineering at the designated engineering school

In addition, a 3/2 engineering major in mathematics must also take the following six courses.

• Mathematics 210: Linear Algebra
• five advanced courses satisfying the following conditions

a. at least two courses must be taken at Sewanee
b. at least two courses must form a two-course sequence in one of the following topics

1) abstract algebra
2) analysis (real analysis I, real analysis II, complex analysis)
3) topology (point-set topology, algebraic topology)
4) probability & statistics

Minors: The department also offers a minor in mathematics and a minor in computer science. A minor in mathematics requires the successful completion of the calculus sequence through Mathematics 207 and any four mathematics courses numbered above 207. A minor in computer science requires the successful completion of Computer Science 157 and 257 and three courses numbered 270 and above.