Mathematics BSc

Placement Offered This course has a Professional Practice option.

  • Overview
  • Course Content
  • Special Features
  • Teaching & Assessment
  • Employability
  • Fees
  • Entry Criteria

About the Course

Mathematics is a fundamental subject that is constantly developing. Yes – it is a discipline in its own right, but it is also the thinking behind countless commercial, industrial and technological activities. Mathematical models underpin engineering, the applied sciences, computing and many aspects of management today. As a Mathematics student you will develop an outlook and high level study skills that will be hugely valuable whatever career path you follow after graduation.

This is a very broad-based course which means the focus is not on a single area of applications such as finance, management or computer studies. Instead, it aims to develop skills that you can use in a wide range of areas. You will study many aspects of pure and applied mathematics, together with general concepts of mathematical modelling. When it comes to the application of mathematics, we cover finance, statistics, operational research (how maths can be applied to commercial and industrial problems), numerical analysis (the approximate solution of very hard problems) and mechanics.

In the final year you will be able to study in-depth those areas of mathematics that particularly appeal to you. For example, you can choose to concentrate, for example, on statistics or financial applications or you can maintain a broad approach to the subject as a whole.

This programme will meet the educational requirements of the Chartered Mathematician designation, awarded by the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, when it is followed by subsequent training and experience in employment to obtain equivalent competences to those specified by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) for taught Master's degrees.

Why study Mathematics?

This course will equip you with a deep understanding and versatility in applying mathematical knowledge to scientific, technological, business and other areas – preparing you for the many jobs that need these skills. We continue throughout to encourage the joy of studying maths that attracted students to this degree in the first place.

Studying maths at Brunel means you will be working with staff who are internationally recognised for their state-of-the-art subject knowledge. Because mathematics has links with many other subject areas, we offer an excitingly wide choice of courses, each with a different emphasis. These include modules in pure and applied mathematics, operational research, computer science, finance, information technology and management studies. This structure means that most individual subject modules are not unique to any particular degree.

We are also very active at postgraduate level offering Mathematics MSc courses and research opportunities in many areas. External grants and contracts with industry and government establishments support much of our research – keeping us right at the 'cutting edge' and actively in contact with modern uses of mathematics. The result is that our undergraduate courses are truly up-to-date. For example, you may undertake your major final year project in one of our research areas.


This course aims to equip students with a deep understanding and versatility in applying mathematical knowledge to scientific, technological, business and other areas – preparing them for the many jobs that need these skills. We continue throughout to encourage the joy of studying Maths that attracted students to this degree in the first place.


Dr D Roman
Admissions Tutor

Department of Mathematics
Brunel University

Tel +44 (0)1895 265180
Fax +44 (0)1895 269732

Related Courses

Course Content

Typical modules

Level 1

  • Linear Algebra
  • Calculus and Numerical Methods
  • Mathematical Modelling
  • Computing Projects and Mechanics
  • Discrete Mathematics, Probability and Statistics

Find out more information about Level 1

Level 2

  • Linear and Numerical Methods
  • Vector Calculus and Applications
  • Communication Skills and Operational Research
  • Statistics
  • Algebra and Discrete Mathematics
  • Analysis

Level 3

  • Major Project (core – see below for more)
  • Statistics
    Numerical methods for partial differential equations
  • Complex Variable Methods and Applications
  • Risk and Optimisation in Finance
  • Differential and Integral Equations
  • Encryption and Data Compression
  • Stochastic models and mathematical finance

Final year project

This is a very valuable feature of the Mathematics BSc course – a substantial piece of individual, course-related work personally supervised by a staff member. Projects are often connected to staff research areas and may also be in response to industry demands.

Work on the project accounts for about one-third of your final year study load. Explore in-depth a topic of particular interest to you or work on a practical problem – the choice is yours.

Although students who undertake a work placement year can choose to focus their final year project on their work experience, they may also select from the projects offered each year by the Mathematics staff. During 2010-2011 over 150 project titles were available to final year Mathematics undergraduates. These covered a very wide range of mathematical areas and applications including, for example:

  • The very famous ’travelling salesman problem’ (also known as ’the lazy waiter’!)
  • The discovery and identification of clustering behaviour in financial markets
  • The mathematics of complex networks such as the web, or even Facebook
  • Applications of statistics to the premier league, police complaints data and global warming
  • Investigating traffic flow (are traffic lights better than roundabouts?)

Our students also have opportunities to study modern theories in quantitative finance, with particular emphasis on the mathematics and computation underlying the powerful and influential financial derivatives (eg options) industry. Often termed the ‘Black-Scholes theory’, this is famous for winning its discoverers a Nobel prize, as well as for its misapplication often being blamed (rightly or wrongly) for the current worldwide financial crisis.

Most of our projects can be carried out in ways that suit the student's strengths and interests. For example, it is often possible to choose to emphasise concrete applications or abstract theory, and the project can be carried out using theoretical tools only, or computational tools only, or a mixture of both.

MMath fourth year Master’s option

Study for a further year (at Level 4) and bring your BSc degree up to Master’s standard. The MMath programme offers a highly integrated, logical progression from BSc to Master’s level.

Complete the course and develop a career requiring a higher level of mathematical skill and understanding – such as in finance, commerce or industry, or in postgraduate research.

Level 4 modules include:

  • Advanced Project
  • Variational methods for partial differential equations
  • Advanced mathematical finance
  • Fluid Mechanics and Waves
  • Mathematical Statistics
  • Advanced Topics in Combinatorics
  • Advanced Topics in Analysis

Special Features

Mathematics is one of the largest disciplines at Brunel and has links with many other subject areas. We offer:

  • Academic staff with international reputation
    Learn from the best. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), nearly 60% of our research in the department was rated ‘World Leading’ or ‘Internationally Excellent’. Within London the Department of Mathematics was ranked in the top three.

  • Excellent career prospects
    Past graduates have gone on to work for Accenture, Rank Xerox, IBM, Kodak, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Bank of New York, Nortel, British Aerospace, Merrill Lynch, Abbey, Lloyds, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte and Touche, Coca Cola, Ernst and Young, Virgin Trains, Accenture, HSBC, BT, Deutsche Bank and the BBC.
  • Optional placement year with top UK companies
    You do not have to decide which study mode (with or without placement) until after you have joined us. You can transfer both to and from the sandwich programme during the first year – sometimes even later. Our placement team has developed strong connections with industry. Our students have taken placements within top UK companies such as BUPA, Debenhams, HSBC, IBM, Thomson Reuters, Unilever, Virgin Trains.

  • Create a programme to suit your interests
    Wide topic choice means you can shape your degree programme to match your own personal interests and strengths.

  • Funding for your learning
    Apply for scholarships worth £1000 per year (excluding placement year).

  • Option to study for an integrated Master’s degree (MMaths)
    Besides the traditional Bachelor’s degree, you may also be able to enrol for an integrated Master’s degree (MMath).

  • Help to bridge the school-university gap
    It is a step up. So we have carefully designed Level 1 modules to make the transition to University level study as manageable as possible.

  • Excellent links with business
    Our staff are involved in research programmes that are informed by modern problems in science, technology and business – often working in collaboration with companies. This means:
    - Degrees designed to meet the needs of industry and the marketplace
    - Latest commercial world developments included in your course
    - Greater choice of high quality, professional placements.

  • A vibrant, friendly, safe campus in a great location near London
    All the advantages of affordable living costs, an international community, world-class sports and social facilities and a thriving arts and social scene. 

Teaching and Learning

Up-to-date techniques
Mathematics is an active and dynamic research centre. Our academics' work is frequently supported by external grants and contracts with leading industry and government establishments.

As a result lecturers are often working at the frontiers of their subject and in active contact with modern users of mathematics. This in turn helps to ensure that our undergraduate degrees are truly up to date.

Broad spectrum of thinking
We offer a wide range of expertise in a variety of subjects. Many of our lecturers are widely published and highly recognised in their fields.

How will I be taught?

We use a range of approaches to help you engage effectively with the subject both through your tutors and working with fellow students:

Lectures – These provide a broad overview of key concepts and ideas. They give you a framework from which to carry out more in-depth study.

Tutorials – In a tutorial you will work on a mathematics-related problem with guidance from a member of staff. He/she will be on hand to help you with your problems. Some tutorials in numerical analysis and statistics are replaced by computer workshops.

One-to-one – In your final year you will normally have one-to-one supervision for your project. You will also be allocated a personal tutor each year who is available to discuss personal or academic problems. If you go on placement your personal tutor will help you set objectives and monitor your progress, and will provide further support if you need it.


The ‘exams to coursework’ ratio is around 50:50 in Level 1, increasing to 70:30 in Level 3.

We base your final degree class on your performance at Levels 2 and 3. Level 3 carries twice the weight of Level 2.


Follow the four-year ‘Professional Placement’ degree programme and you will benefit from our extensive experience in helping students to find well-paid work placements with blue-chip companies. Our sandwich students find that their mathematical and transferable skills are in demand in many sectors, both in the UK and abroad.

Areas recently offering placements include: accountancy, aviation, banking, defence, finance, insurance, IT (software development, network management and design), management (public and private sector), marketing and telecommunications.

Switching courses later is easy
If you are not sure precisely which programme to follow now don't worry – you will have the chance to change after the course starts. So the decision you make now is NOT final. Once you are at the University, you can explore what works best for you.


Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey

These statistics relate to graduates from a number of different pathways – Mathematics, Mathematics and Management Studies, Mathematics and Computing, Mathematics and Statistics with Management and Mathematics with Computer Science.

In 2012/13, six months after graduating:

Read more about graduate destinations for this subject area

As a Brunel Maths graduate you will enjoy excellent employment prospects. Our combination of work experience and up-to-date teaching means that you will be well-equipped to follow the career you want after graduation.

What kind of careers?

The sky is the limit – career prospects for mathematicians are excellent. Maybe you want to pursue a career that specifically uses your mathematical or statistical skills? Or perhaps you’d prefer a more general career – such as management or consultancy?

Either way you will possess key skills that are highly sought after by business – in fact any industry that uses modelling, simulation, cryptography, forecasting, statistics, risk analysis and probability.

These are some of the areas where a Maths degree is valued highly:

Finance: banking, accountancy, actuarial, tax, underwriter, pensions, insurance

Medicine: medical statistics, medical and epidemiological research, pharmaceutical research

Design: engineering design, computer games

Science: biotechnology, meteorology, oceanography, pure and applied research and development

Civil Service: scientists (‘Fast Stream’, DSTL, DESG), GCHQ, security service, statisticians

Business: logistics, financial analysis, marketing, market research, sales oil industry, management consultancy, operational research

IT: Systems analysis, research

Engineering: aerospace, building design, transport planning, telecommunications, surveying


We know just how much experience counts in the job market. You will have the opportunity to gain invaluable work experience alongside experts in industry, the public sector and commerce – both in the UK or overseas. In fact if you undertake a four year professional placement programme, you are likely to earn some £4,400 more than your three-year course colleagues from ‘Day One’ in your job. (Source: The Brunel report on Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education 2009/10)

At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.

» More about Employability

Fees for 2015/6 entry

UK/EU students: £9,000 full-time; £1,000 placement year

International students: £14,750 full-time

See our fees and funding page for full details of scholarships available to Brunel applicants

Fees quoted are per annum and are subject to an annual increase.

Entry Requirements 2015/6

  • GCE A-level ABB, including grade A in Mathematics or Further Mathematics.
  • BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma DDD plus A-level Mathematics at Grade A.
  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma DD in a related subject with an A-level Maths at grade A.
  • BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma D in a related subject with A-levels grade AB including an A grade in Maths.
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma 31 points, including 6 points in Higher Mathematics.
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma Complete and pass relevant Access course with 45 credits at Level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. Applicants must also have an A-level in Maths grade A.
  • Foundations of Information Systems, Computing and Mathematics course For Brunel Foundation of Information Systems, Computing and Mathematics progression requirements, see the course page.

GCSE Mathematics grade C and GCSE English grade C are also required.

Please check our Admissions pages for more information on other factors we use to assess applicants as well as our full GCSE requirements and accepted equivalencies in place of GCSEs.

Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.

EU Entry Requirements

If your country is not listed here please contact Admissions

English Language Requirements

  • IELTS: 6 (min 5.5 in all areas) 
  • Pearson: 51 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 60% (min 55% in all areas)

“Brunel University London strongly recommends that if you will require a Tier 4 visa, you sit your IELTS test at a test centre that has been approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) as being a provider of a Secure English Language Test (SELT). Not all test centres have this status. The University can accept IELTS (with the required scores) taken at any official test centre or other English Language qualifications we accept as meeting our main award entry requirements. However, if you wish to undertake a Pre-sessional English course to further improve your English prior to the start of your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider. This is because you will only be able to apply for a Tier 4 student visa to undertake a Pre-sessional English course if you hold a SELT from a UKVI approved test centre. Find out more information about it.

Brunel also offers our own BrunELT English Test and accept a range of other language courses. We also have a range of Pre-sessional English language courses, for students who do not meet these requirements, or who wish to improve their English.

Our International Pathways and Language Centre offers a range of foundation and pre-masters courses to provide you with the academic skills required for your chosen course.”

Page last updated: Tuesday 30 June 2015