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What is ACMS?

Applied and computational mathematics and statistics use modeling, simulation, and data analysis to produce solutions to real-world problems. These methods are used in a wide variety of areas in business, engineering, the natural sciences, and the social sciences.

Why Choose a Degree in ACMS?

The Chronicle of Higher Education reported that computational science is one of the top five up-and-coming majors. A Bachelor of Science in Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics offers preparation for careers in fields like engineering, business, and actuarial science. It readies students interested in graduate studies in applied mathematics or statistics and provides opportunities to join a variety of interdisciplinary research teams.

The Department of Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics (ACMS) offers programs of study leading to the Bachelor of Science degree in Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics. Computational skills, which are often required to solve real-world problems, will be developed continuously throughout the curriculum. For many students, significant work in an area of application will complement their core studies. Graduates of the program will be well prepared for the following opportunities:

  • Employment in technical fields requiring skills in statistics and computation
  • Employment and further study in quantitative methods in business and economics
  • Further training in professional master’s or doctoral programs in applied mathematics or statistics
  • Graduate study, at the master’s or doctoral level, in bioinformatics or computational biology


In addition to the core Bachelor of Science major, ACMS offers a concentration in biological sciences, which prepares students for further study or employment in computational biology, bioinformatics, ecological modeling, or epidemiology, as well as an ACMS supplementary major.

Courses and degree options in statistics will be added as statistics faculty are hired.

Applied and Computational Mathematics at the University

Applied and computational mathematics knowledge and skills are found in numerous departments. Faculty currently using applied mathematics study topics such as blood clotting, tumor growth, option pricing of stocks, high-performance fuel pumps, and flow patterns in coastal seas. The University’s Center for Research Computing, under the direction of the Office of Research, provides a significant amount of computational power to the campus, along with research faculty and staff, to assist research groups in using the hardware.

ACMS in Practical Terms

Develop a Model

ACMS students and faculty solve real problems by building a mathematical model of a phenomenon in biology, physics, engineering, economics, and so on. Those models are used to explain relationships and to simulate how the phenomenon will behave. Models can do what experiments often can’t because of time or expense or the physical limitations of the system.

Implement the Model

Real problems have complex solutions. Models must be built and examined using computational methods – special methods that are executed by computers. Computation is becoming a scientific method equal in power and importance to theory and experiment.

Gather Data

We learn about phenomena (e.g. gene sequencing, climate change, and stock price trends) by collecting data. Statistics builds models from data, and technology enables increased richness of data and the ability to analyze it realistically.

For more information about ACMS degrees contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies.