Skip to main content

Unit information: Perspectives in Mathematics in 2020/21

Unit name Perspectives in Mathematics
Unit code MATH30024
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Snaith
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Mathematics
Faculty Faculty of Science


Unit Aims:

To prepare students for their future career by completing independent and group work developing communication in written, live and video media and by supporting their peers in accomplishing these tasks.

Unit Description:

This course is excellent preparation for your future career, whether that be in big industry, startups, academia or education. You will use your maths background to develop your written and oral communication, create independent work and support peers in group work. It is suggested that all 3rd year students not undertaking other project work seriously consider taking this course.

The unit is composed of various activities that are flexible and for each activity allow choice to explore literature in maths or maths education, in abstract or more applied maths, to explore mathematics that is new to you, or use the maths background you already possess.

The unit comprises three periods of activity. For the first task you will write a short article on a mathematical topic for a target audience, for example writing for the general public. As a group you will also produce a video on a selected topic. For the second task you will pick from a selection of accessible articles on topics in maths or maths education and present your article to a group in a tutorial-style setting.

The third part of the course will involve you working in a group to undertake substantial research into a new area focussing upon one of two approaches. In one option you will have the freedom to explore a maths subject of your own choice, working collaboratively with staff and fellow students, culminating in presenting to your peers what you have learned. In the other option you will work in small groups collaboratively with your peers to generate and evaluate a business case for a new company based upon a mathematical idea, learning the skills to write business plans and present to working entrepreneurs. In both tracks, these skills will help you stand out from your competition, wherever your career leads you.

Intended learning outcomes

  • Gain experience presenting to an audience
  • Gain an understanding of the challenges in writing mathematics for an appropriate audience
  • Gain experience in writing about and motivating a mathematical topic
  • Learn to participate constructively in peer review
  • Gain practice in effective peer assessment
  • Gain experience in working effectively with a group of peers
  • Experience creating a mathematical presentation through the medium of video
  • Gain skills associated with presenting work in written form
  • Learn to present findings orally

Teaching details

Presentations from experts delivering skills training; peer review; peer assessment; small group work; office hours and drop-in sessions

Assessment Details

Two smaller projects are carried out in Teaching Block 1, with the first task worth 30% and the second worth 20%.

There is one larger group project during Teaching Block 2 worth 50%.

Reading and References

Various online resources related to topics chosen