The University of Arizona

M.A./M.S. Requirements

Course Requirements

MA Degree: 30 units of approved graduate credit, including up to 6 units of thesis credit; 9 to 12 units must be in courses from departments other than Mathematics. At least one year-long course sequence in mathematics which is not dual-numbered must be included.

MA Degree (Teaching Option): 30 units of approved graduate credit, including up to 6 units of thesis credit; 9 to 12 units should be outside the Department of Mathematics or from the following list of graduate mathematics courses: Math 504, 530, and 596E (Topics in Mathematics for Secondary Teachers – contents will vary, the course may be repeated). At least 12 units of mathematics should not be from that list, and should include a year long course sequence which is not dual-numbered. Each candidate's course of study should be established in consultation with a member of the Mathematics Education Committee. Please consult the Mathematics Education Research website.

MS Degree: 30 units of approved graduate credit, including up to 6 units of thesis credit. The 30 units must include at least 18 units of courses that are not dual-numbered, including a year long course sequence in mathematics. The 30 units must also include 6 units in courses from departments other than Mathematics. As with the PhD degree, the requirement of 6 units from outside the Math department may also be satisfied with an internship. See the "Outside of Department Courses or Internship"  section of the PhD requirements for more details.

Program Of Study

Each student must present a coherent collection of courses in which the work outside of Mathematics is related to part of the studies in Mathematics. There are many such possibilities, including: algebra, and computer science or discrete methods in operations research; probability, and statistics or reliability/quality control; numerical mathematics, and computer science or computational science; mathematical foundations and history, and education; analysis, and physics or optics; etc.


A Master's thesis is required for which students may receive up to 6 units of graduate credit. PhD candidates may substitute successful completion of the Comprehensive Examination for the Master's thesis.

Professional Development Requirements

MA and MS students must complete one professional development requirement chosen from this list:

  • foreign language requirement
  • computing requirement
  • communication skills requirement

The details of each requirement are the same as for the PhD program and may be found here. Students should consult with their advisors on which requirement would be the best choice given their area of study and career plans. Advisors may also suggest that students complete more than one of these requirements. Students are urged to complete the professional development requirement as early in their programs as possible.


Successful performance is required of all MA and MS recipients on either a Final Oral Examination which covers work presented for the Master's Degree and defense of the thesis, or the Comprehensive Oral Examination for the PhD degree.

Department of Mathematics, The University of Arizona 617 N. Santa Rita Ave. P.O. Box 210089 Tucson, AZ 85721-0089 USA Voice: (520) 621-6892 Fax: (520) 621-8322 Contact Us © Copyright 2017 Arizona Board of Regents All rights reserved