Mathematics at Corpus is taught by Dr Paul Dellar and Professor Pier Francesco Palamara, assisted by Dr Lucy Auton and Ms Victoria Patel. Within the Joint Schools, Computer Science is taught and overseen by Professor Luke Ong, Philosophy by Professor Marion Durand, and Statistics by Professor Pier Francesco Palamara.
Dr Dellar's research includes lattice Boltzmann approaches for modelling fluids and other physical systems, the fluid dynamics of the atmosphere and oceans, and mathematical problems in industry. Professor Palamara's research is at the intersection of statistics, computer science, and genetics.
Teaching is supported by the following lecturers: Mr Matija Tapuskovic, Dr Gonzalo Mena, and Mr Fabian Zaiser.
Mathematics at Oxford
One of the things you will find on starting Maths at University is that there is a change in style and emphasis from what you do at school. You will find that pure mathematics at University introduces new and more abstract and fundamental ideas in courses on algebra and analysis; and in particular you will realise the central importance of proof. A subject like differential equations is treated as applied, for example because the problems of mechanics may be framed in their terms. (Indeed, the study of many parts of mathematics was first couched in terms of applications to physical problems.)
The Oxford syllabus
The first year course gives you a broad grounding in the basics of the subject, in both pure and applied mathematics, on which to build your mathematical understanding. At the end of Trinity (summer) Term you will take Prelims, a series of five exams.
The first term of the second year continues with more core courses, and after that you will start to specialize in your chosen aspects of mathematics. At this point students have usually developed some preferences, and their mathematical style is beginning to emerge; so you head towards becoming an analyst, or an algebraist, or a probabilist.
Throughout your first two years you will have about two tutorials a week in college, typically as a pair and occasionally as a class of up to six. From the start of your third year you specialize further, and support for lectures is through classes of about 8 or 10 organised at a departmental level. All colleges have such a pattern of teaching.
Mathematics and Philosophy
Typical applicants have a mixture of A levels, often double Maths with at least one Arts subject, and they are committed to mathematics but also have a strong desire to retain a balance and explore the world of philosophy. You need to be good at both subjects to read Maths and Philosophy, and in particular to be comfortable writing essays that explore philosophical concepts.
Mathematics and Computer Science
The same applies to applicants in Maths and Computer Science as in Maths and Philosophy. You need to be good at both subjects to do this, though the computer science is mostly treated in a mathematical manner. Recent Corpus students have performed very well in this joint degree.
Mathematics and Statistics
This is a popular course, which naturally prepares you in particular for statistical applications. The first year is identical to that for Mathematics. Because Statistics is more closely aligned with Mathematics, this course is more closely "joint" than the two joint degrees mentioned above.
Three year or four year course?
The main distinction between the two courses is that the four year course enables you to go further. The fourth year is akin to a first graduate year (or an MSc). Typically half or more of our students carry on to the fourth year. (If you are unsure about which is for you, it is best to apply initially for the four-year course.)
Mathematics Admissions Test (MAT) support
The University's Mathematical Institute will run live broadcasts every Thursday from 5 pm until 7 pm (August 2022, until the test date in early November) which involves working through MAT problems and chatting about maths. For edited-down 'maths-only' videos from the 2020 livestream, please see the YouTube playlist.