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Data-Based Decision Making

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics conducted a comprehensive self-study of their graduate programs in 2013. The primary recommendations – as a part of a five-year plan – are summarized below.


  • Credit and Coursework Requirements: Reduce the number of required credit hours for PhD programs, to 45 for candidates with a prior MS, and 72 for candidates with a BS, only; provide 1-credit and 2-credit courses for greater flexibility and breadth; eliminate compulsory courses, for greater flexibility in preparing for dissertation and thesis projects.
  • Rapid Engagement of Graduate Students in Research Projects: Offer a fall seminar for incoming graduate students to introduce them to active research areas in the department; organize a thesis-oriented seminar in spring, culminating in a two-day research symposium for students to present their work.
  • Recruitment and Extension: Actively recruit from our own group of promising undergraduate students; recruit well-qualified students directly from Bachelor’s programs into the PhD track; provide a more flexible MMath program across the State of Utah.
  • Program Management: Place more emphasis on student presentations and publications; seek additional funding sources to increase number and quality of teaching assistants; track student outcomes more comprehensively, including time to completion and post-graduate employment.


An assessment of this self-study and five-year plan was carried out in 2015, and can be found here.