Apr 14, 2021  
College Catalog 2021-2022 
    
College Catalog 2021-2022

Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science


Full Time Faculty: Vittorio Addona, Andrew Beveridge, Paul Cantrell, Lian Duan, Taryn Flock, Susan Fox (Chair), Kelsey Grinde, Thomas Halverson, Brianna Heggeseth, Kristin Heysse, Bret Jackson, Alicia Johnson, Esra Kadioglu Urtis, Lisa Lendway, Abigail Marsh, Lauren Milne, William Mitchell, Leslie Myint, Lisa Naples, Getiria Onsongo, Joslenne Peña, Shilad Sen, Elizabeth Shoop, David Shuman, Lori Ziegelmeier

Part Time Faculty: David Ehren, Elizabeth Ernst  

The MSCS department combines at least four different disciplines: theoretical mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics, and computer science. We have chosen to remain as a joint department because we are deeply aware of the connections among our disciplines, and we seek to build a curricula that embodies those synergies. We are committed to collaborating across disciplinary boundaries, both in research and in education. Students with all levels of preparation can find success and a home in our department.  Our curriculum is designed to be inclusive and accessible to all.

Mission Statement: Our mission in the Department of Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science is to contribute to the broad education of Macalester students with a particular emphasis on critical analysis, founded on  methods and communication skills that are quantitative, logical, computational, and analytic in character. For our majors, we give a deep grounding that can support future professional activity. For non-majors from quantitative and analytic disciplines, we provide the foundational concepts and skills that assist them to progress in those fields. We help all students - the general education student as well as majors in our own and partner disciplines -  to acquire an appreciation of the beauty and significance of our disciplines, including their relation to ongoing events in the broader world.

Mathematics and Statistics

Mathematics area coordinator: Lori Ziegelmeier

Statistics area coordinator: Victor Addona

The MSCS department offers courses in theoretical and applied mathematics, statistics, and data science to meet the needs of students with a wide range of interests such as:

  • careers involving applied mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics, and data science. 
  • secondary school teaching;
  • graduate work in mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics, biostatistics, data science, or engineering. 

The MSCS department offers a Mathematics major and minor, an Applied Mathematics and Statistics major, a Statistics minor and a Data Science minor.

Placement

Entering students should consult the Entry Courses in MSCS link on the department webpage to determine where to start in the mathematics curriculum. 

Computer Science

Computer Science area coordinator (and MSCS department chair): Susan Fox

The MSCS department offers courses in theoretical and applied computer science, and data science. A Macalester computer science student is prepared for advanced study in computer science or related fields, or for software development and other technical work in the industry. The program is firmly committed to the principles and ideals of a liberal arts education. An important goal of the program is to produce graduates who are self-educators and life-long learners, characteristics that are so important in a rapidly changing discipline.

Placement

Entering students should consult the Entry Courses in MSCS link on the department webpage to determine where to start in the computer science or data science curricula.

General Distribution Requirement

All courses in the department count toward the general distribution requirement in mathematics and natural science except those numbered COMP 154  and MATH 212 . Both COMP 154  and MATH 212  count toward the humanities general distribution requirement.

General Education Requirements

Courses that meet the general education requirements in writing, quantitative thinking, internationalism and US identities and differences will be posted on the Registrar’s web page in advance of registration for each semester.

Additional information regarding the general distribution requirement and the general education requirements can be found in the graduation requirements section of this catalog.

Honors Program

The MSCS department participates in the honors program. Eligibility requirements, application procedures and specific project expectations can be found on the department webpage or the Academic Programs and Advising Office.

Topics Courses

COMP 194  , COMP 294  , COMP 394  , COMP 494  , MATH 194 , MATH 294 , MATH 394 , MATH 494 , STAT 194 , STAT 294 STAT 394 , STAT 494  

Selected topics in computer science, mathematics, applied mathematics, and statistics. When the course is offered, the topic and prerequisites for that semester will be announced and posted prior to registration. (4 credits)

Independent Study

The MSCS department offers independent study options in the form of tutorials, independent projects, internships, preceptorships and Honors independent projects. For more information contact the department and review the Curriculum  section of the catalog.

Programs