Graduate Certificate in Mathematics

Mathematical fields are predicted to grow nearly three times faster than most fields. A graduate certificate in mathematics, either online or on-campus, could give job seekers an edge. Schools offering Mathematics degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

How to earn a graduate certificate in mathematics

Mathematical careers are expected to grow by 27 percent or more in the next five years, so a graduate certificate in mathematics could put a jobseeker in a more desirable position without the time commitment and expense of a master's degree program. Most programs require a bachelor's degree for admission and take a year to complete, require four to six classes or 12 to 18 credits, and can include the following classes;

Linear algebra

Linear algebra is used in many areas of modern science. In addition to its practical applications, linear algebra coursework involves a rigorous study of vector spaces and subspaces and their common properties. Typically, a graduate-level course will address systems of linear equations and transformations, abstract vector spaces and matrices.

Real Analysis

Students study the theoretical foundations of mathematics based on properties of real numbers. Topics include the real number system, both metric and topological spaces, convergence, sequences and waves and limits. A graduate course demonstrates how the various areas of mathematics are interconnected.

Applied mathematics

Applied mathematical problems are found in many scientific areas, so curriculum may vary. Coursework might be abstract or more concrete, depending on the focus. Topics typically include boundary value problems, first-order equations and the calculus of variations. Students will study areas wherein mathematics had a considerable impact.


Topology coursework focuses on creating new spaces and geometries by stretching and deforming. Topics include connectedness, continuity, separation properties, homology theory and function spaces. Students typically study both theory and usage.

Number theory

Number theory is the pure study of integers and their properties. Modern number theory has a variety of subcategories, including algebra, geometry, probability and analytic. Topics in a graduate-level course often include prime numbers, pseudoprimes and perfect numbers, congruences and modular arithmetic.


The algebra coursework for a graduate certificate in mathematics typically is a general class that continues undergraduate study. Students can expect to dig into algebraic ring theory and field theory and algebraic extension fields as well as specific theorems of Modern Algebra. Group theory also becomes important in advanced algebra.

What can you do with a graduate certificate in mathematics?

Employment in fields involving mathematics is expected to grow by 28 percent between 2016 and 2026. Jobs in math pay a median wage of $86,700 per year as of May 2018, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Postsecondary math teachers

Many programs for graduate certificates in mathematics are geared toward those who wish to teach postsecondary math, particularly at the community college level. At most universities, instructors are required to hold a doctoral degree, however, many community colleges will hire instructors with a master's degree or a graduate certificate with experience.


Mathematicians and statisticians apply the mathematical theories they have learned to real-world problems in a variety of industries. In other positions, they may devise new mathematical theories. A master's degree is often required for mathematician jobs, however, some positions require a bachelor's degree, so a graduate certificate in mathematics could give a jobseeker an extra edge.

Operations Research Analyst

These analysts use mathematical modeling, statistical analysis and other methods to help businesses and organizations solve problems. Most entry-level jobs require a bachelor's degree, but some employers prefer applicants to hold a master's degree, so a graduate certificate in mathematics could boost a jobseeker's chances.


Actuaries use mathematics to help businesses determine risks and the possible impacts of risks. A bachelor's degree is often required. Actuaries must have strong and deep math skills, so a graduate certificate could boost an actuary's' skill level.


Economists need a strong mathematical background to research and analyze economic issues and trends. Although a master's degree is required for many economist positions, entry-level positions can be found that require a bachelor's degree with a master's degree coursework.

Career Median salary* (May 2018) Job growth through 2026
Postsecondary teacher $73,230 15%
Mathematician/Statistician $88,190 33%
Operations Research Analyst $83,39027%
Actuary $102,880 22%
Economist $104,3406%

Bureau of Labor Statistics*

A graduate certificate in mathematics can help boost an already-established career in mathematics or provide a bridge to a master's degree. Mathematics careers are predicted to grow faster than most, so a graduate certificate in mathematics has become a more attractive option for those in the field.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Portland State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Oregon: Portland
  • University of Minnesota

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    • Minnesota: Minneapolis
  • Yuba College

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    • California: Marysville
  • Youngstown State University

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    • Ohio: Youngstown
  • York College of Pennsylvania

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    • Pennsylvania: York
  • Yeshiva University

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    • New York: New York
  • Yale University

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    • Connecticut: New Haven
  • Xavier University of Louisiana

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    • Louisiana: New Orleans
  • Xavier University

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    • Ohio: Cincinnati
  • Worcester State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Massachusetts: Worcester