Institute of Mathematics

Master's course

The Masters course

The Masters course provides the student with a scientific education in depth, and develops the capability of independent scientific work. The degree is the "Master of Science in Mathematics" (MSc). 90 credit points (modules) are needed to obtain the degree. The recommended duration of the course is 3 semesters.

In the Masters course, substantial emphasis is placed upon a Masters thesis, requiring about 2 semesters of work, in the form of a research dissertation of a high scientific standard.

The MSc in mathematics is the qualification necessary for academic mathematical careers, and forms the scientific basis for a career as gymnasial teacher.

The Masters degree in mathematics can include a minor subject, requiring 30 credit points. The 30 credit points are on top of the 90 achieved in the major. 

The Masters degree carries a grade. The grade is the average of the marks obtained in the individual modules as well as the Masters thesis, weighted according to their credit points. The marks for major and minor subjects appear separately on the certificate. The weighted average is rounded up to the next 1/10 of a mark. Students must send an application to the Dean of Studies in order to obtain the degree. The necessary documents are listed in the "Merkblatt Masterarbeit und Masterprüfung". If all the conditions have been met, and if the application is made more than 3 weeks before a faculty meeting, the degree will be awarded at that meeting; otherwise, at the next one.

Detailed information is to be found in the "Studienordnung" for studying in the Bachelor and Master programs at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences of the University of Zurich from July 1, 2015 and in the "Wegleitung for the study of mathematics".

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How do I find a master thesis?

Possible topics for a Master's thesis are dynamic and very individual, which is why it is difficult to specify a list of open Master's thesis topics. In the search for a suitable Master's thesis, we therefore recommend that you get in touch with one or a possible lecturer at the beginning of the Master's program. It is best to make an appointment for an initial interview, in which the topic of the Master's thesis may already be agreed upon. Once the topic is clear, you should also discuss the meaningful familiarization with the area. The preconditions which the individual lecturers place on their students are published from time to time in the Bulletin of the Fachvereins Mathematik or can be accessed via the homepage of the lecturer.

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Masters Thesis

The Masters Thesis is a very important part of the Masters course, and carries corresponding weight. The time needed to produce the thesis is roughly 2 semesters, plus one for getting into the subject. These are only guidelines. The master exam is oral and lasts 60 minutes. The content of the Master's examination is the Master's thesis and the environment of the Master's thesis in agreement with the person responsible for the Master's thesis. The date of the Master's examination is agreed with the person responsible for the module of the Master's thesis. In addition to the person responsible for the Master's thesis, one to two other persons authorized to take part in the Master's examination participate in the Master's examination. Examiners are ordinary and extraordinary professors, assistant professors and adjunct professors, private lecturers and postdocs of the faculty. Corresponding persons of other faculties or university colleges can be consulted. In addition, assessors may be present who have an academic degree at the diploma or master level. You will find all leaflets as well as registration forms here.

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