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Mathematics and Statistics

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Photo: Science Photo Library / Enigma machine / Mathematics and Statistics / Open University

Mathematics is at the heart of advances in science, engineering and technology, as well as being an indispensable problem-solving and decision-making tool in many other areas of life. You may relish the intellectual challenge of exploring particular aspects of pure or applied maths that interest you, or you may be looking to advance your career with a high-level qualification. Whatever your motivation or ambitions, the OU’s programme of postgraduate maths courses has a great deal to offer.

How far you take your studies is up to you. We currently have around five hundred students actively studying for our masters degree, by far the largest number of students on any mathematics MSc in the UK. However, you can also opt to take just a single course, or to study for our postgraduate mathematics certificate or diploma as a milestone to achieving an MSc in the future.

A mathematics course at the OU gives you access to important and fascinating areas of mathematics, such as fractals, coding theory and the history of mathematics. While extending your mathematical knowledge, your studies will also refine your abilities to process information accurately, and critically analyse and communicate complex ideas.

Browse this website and discover the wide variety of postgraduate courses in mathematics, designed to help you work towards the qualification of your choice.

Where to start in Mathematics and Statistics

If you're planning to study mathematics at postgraduate level you will need a minimum of a second-class honours degree in mathematics or in a subject with a high mathematical content. Whatever your background, you should assess your suitability to study at this level by trying our diagnostic quiz.

Calculus of variations and advanced calculus (M820) is designed as a general introduction to postgraduate study and we recommend that you study this course first. However if you are a mathematics graduate primarily interested in pure mathematics, you may prefer to start with Analytic number theory I (M823). You must normally pass at least one of these two courses before studying any other module in the postgraduate mathematics programme.

As some of the postgraduate mathematics courses are more advanced than others, you are advised to view the guidance about the order of study given in the description for each qualification.

Taught Masters

  • Mathematics
    An MSc for mathematicians, scientists and engineers, exploring aspects of pure and applied maths. Options include calculus of variations, fractal geometry, number theory, functional analysis, and coding theory.



Courses in Mathematics and Statistics

See the list of all our individual courses in Mathematics and Statistics.

Research degrees

For information about postgraduate research degrees, visit the Research Degrees Prospectus.

Studying outside of UK and Europe?

If you live outside of the UK, Republic of Ireland and Europe, please visit our website for international students.


Spotlight on Mathematics and Statistics

Start dates

From 2013, our postgraduate courses in mathematics will be changing from having a start date in February to starting in October. See the individual descriptions for further details.

Are you ready for postgraduate study in Mathematics?

Under normal circumstances, you should have at least a second-class honours degree in mathematics or in a subject with a high mathematical content. Whatever your background, you should assess your suitability for the MSc by trying our diagnostic quiz.

Careers after the MSc

Some of our graduates go on to do a PhD, particularly if they are hoping to specialise in the more mathematical areas of academia. Visit the Maths Careers website for more information.


Your questions

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