2006 - 2007 Site Archive



Graduate Bulletin

Mathematics, Ph.D.


Admission Requirements and Deadlines
Application Deadline:

Fall: February 15

Spring: November 15

Applications are processed on a semi-rolling basis.

Letters of Reference:

Number Required: 3

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from individuals who are well acquainted with the applicant's abilities and achievements in mathematics and related areas, particularly former instructors in mathematics courses and projects. Letters from instructors in related areas such as computation or the physical and life sciences are also appropriate. In certain cases, letters from employment supervisors or project leaders may be appropriate as well.

Coursework Required for Admission Consideration:

Applicants must complete fundamental undergraduate mathematics courses. Prospective students are encouraged to contact the department to discuss their background.

Master's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:


Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:


Statement of Goals:

A Statement of Goals should describe the strengths and motivation of the applicant, the purpose for applying to a graduate program in mathematics, and why the applicant is interested in the intended degree. It should be well written. This forum should be used to make the applicant's strongest case for admission.

Standardized Test Scores:

The GRE is required. The department considers an applicant's overall record and does not use rigid minimum score criteria. Students who wish to discuss their scores are encouraged to contact the department directly.

The GRE Subject Exam in Mathematics is required.

Minimum TOEFL score or range of scores needed to be accepted: 575 paper-based or 230 computer-based. Any student admitted with a TOEFL score below 600 on the paper-based or 250 on the computer-based examination must pass an English skills course or successfully pass the SPEAK test during the first semester of enrollment at Temple University.


A resume is required.

Transfer Credit:

Students who have taken graduate courses at other institutions, or at Temple University prior to matriculation, may apply for transfer credit. Applications will not be considered until the student has completed at least one semester of full-time graduate study or the equivalent, if the student is part-time. All applicants for transfer credit are reviewed by the Mathematics Graduate Committee and may be denied if the Committee decides that the courses involved are substantially inferior to similar courses offered by the department. No course completed more that five years before the date of application will be awarded credit. Credit for courses substantially similar to courses taken since matriculation will not be awarded. If a course was taken before the bachelor's degree was earned, it cannot be awarded transfer credit. Transfer credit is only available for graduate-level courses in mathematical content. The maximum number of credits a student may transfer is 9.

Advanced Standing:

A student who has completed an M.A. degree at another institution may apply for advanced standing. Students are awarded varying numbers of credit of advanced standing. This differs from transfer credit in that the number of credit hours awarded is recorded on the transcript without specific information about the courses transferred. The effect of having advanced standing is to reduce the total number of credit hours the student is required to take at Temple University. Credit for advanced standing can only be awarded to students who have completed an M.A. degree at another institution. Although there is no requirement that the degree must have been completed recently, the amount of time since the degree has been completed is taken into consideration. The maximum number of advanced standing credits awarded is 30.

Test Waivers:

An applicant who wishes to have certain admission requirements waived must contact the department directly to discuss the situation. Requests will be considered by the department on a case-by-case basis. In some cases, an additional appeal to the Graduate School may be required. In such a case, the department will make a preliminary determination for the applicant and, if positive, will issue a supporting letter to the Graduate School for the applicant.

Program Requirements

Campus Location:

Main Campus

Full-Time/Part-Time Status:

Students are able to complete the degree program through classes offered before 4:30 p.m.

General Program Requirements:

Number of Didactic Credits Required Beyond the Master's: 48

Required Courses:

MATH 501 or 502: Problem Seminar

MATH 557-558: Real Analysis

MATH 559-560: Complex Analysis

MATH 575-576: Abstract Algebra

Many students also take MATH 417: Concepts of Analysis.

With the exception of the problems seminar, all of the courses listed above should be taken during the first two years of graduate study. Students who have had graduate courses in these subjects prior to admission may omit some or all of the courses.

Internship: No internship is required.

Language Examination: Yes, a language examination is required. Students must demonstrate a reading knowledge of two of the following languages: Chinese, French, German, Japanese, or Russian.

Culminating Events:

Preliminary Examination:

The preliminary examination is a two-hour oral exam. It must be taken before the end of the fourth year and can be repeated only once. No student will be permitted to take the preliminary examination before passing the Ph.D. written comprehensive examination and satisfying the foreign language requirement.

The student chooses a chief examiner with the advice and consent of the graduate committee, and with the consent of the the proposed chief examiner. The chief examiner, in accepting his/her assignment, implicitly offers to be the student's dissertation supervisor if the examination is passed. Approximately one-half of the preliminary examination will be conducted by the chief examiner, who will ask questions in the area that the student has chosen as a specialty. The other half of the examination will be devoted to questions asked by other faculty members on two or more elementary topics related to the area of specialization. The exact description of the elementary topics to be included in the examination is determined by the chief examiner, who will also be responsible for assigning examiners to cover the topics. The examination committee consists of the chief examiner, the examiners for the elementary topics, and any other faculty who choose to attend. All faculty in attendance may vote on the outcome of the examination. The examination will be considered passed if the chief examiner and at least one-half of the other faculty present vote in favor of passing.


Students who are preparing to write their preliminary examinations should confirm a time and date with the chair of their Dissertation Advisory Committee and register with the graduate secretary. The student and chair will receive confirmation of the time, date, room, and proctor for the examination.


Preparation of the dissertation will be supervised by the student's Dissertation Advisory Committee (DAC). This committee must include at least three Temple faculty, two of whom must be in the Mathematics Department. The chair of the committee must be a member of the Temple University Mathematics Department. The DAC may include members of other Temple University departments; it is also possible for faculty from other universities or expert advisors employed in non-university settings to be included in the DAC.

The first step in preparing the dissertation is to write a dissertation proposal, which must be approved by the candidate's DAC. The proposal is kept on file, and if it becomes necessary to alter the proposal, the changes should be approved by the DAC and filed with the proposal.

The dissertation defense may be attended by faculty and graduate students from Temple University or other institutions, as well as mathematicians or scientists employed in a non-academic setting. The candidate's Dissertation Examining Committee (DEC) must attend the defense. This committee includes the candidate's DAC and at least one additional member, who must be a faculty of some Temple University department other than mathematics or a faculty member of another university. The DEC will meet at the conclusion of the dissertation defense and decide, by majority vote, if the candidate was successful.

If a student needs to change a member of a committee, the new member must be approved by the department's graduate committee and registered with the graduate secretary and the Graduate School.

The candidate's dissertation must be a distinctive and original contribution to research in mathematics. It must be an individual work, with only one author. Previously published work by the candidate may be included, if it represents research done while the student was enrolled in the Ph.D. program in mathematics at Temple University and was not used to obtain any other degree. Joint work that cannot be attributed to the candidate alone must not be included in the body of the dissertation, but may be attached as an appendix. All previously published work must be logically connected and integrated into the dissertation, with a common introduction, conclusion, and bibliography. Existing copyrights must not be violated.

Students who are preparing to defend their dissertation should confirm a date and time with their DAC and register with the graduate secretary at least 15 days before the defense is to be scheduled. The graduate chair will arrange the date, time, and room. The graduate secretary will forward to the student the appropriate forms.

When the dissertation is deemed complete by the candidate and the DAC, a defense will be scheduled. This dissertation defense must be announced in writing at least 10 days in advance of its occurrence, and copies of the announcement must be directed to each member of the candidate's DEC, each faculty member of the Mathematics Department, the Dean of the Graduate School, the Dean of the College of Science and Technology, and the Temple Times. Copies of the announcement are to be posted at the Department Office and at the College Office.

Program Contact Information:


Department Information:

Department of Mathematics
638 Wachman Hall (038-16)
1805 North Broad Street
Philadelphia PA 19122


Department Contacts:


Kathleen Paul


Program Coordinator:

Eric Grinberg


Graduate Chairperson:

Eric Grinberg



John Schiller


About the Program

The Ph.D. program prepares students for careers that depend on advanced mathematics. These include broad directions such as advanced research and development, education, industry, government, and national laboratories. For new students, the program offers a repertoire of courses and research opportunities that ease the transition from undergraduate to advanced graduate studies. These courses provide a sound mathematical background, while helping beginning students to mature mathematically. Naturally, individuals with enough maturity and knowledge need not take these more basic courses. This introductory curriculum is an example of Temple University's general philosophy. In our department, this philosophy takes shape as a commitment to participate actively in our students' development as future professionals whose work involves advanced mathematics. We take pride in caring for our students. Our faculty are very accessible and quite willing to talk mathematics with any inquiring student. It is this attitude toward our students that most distinguishes our program from other graduate programs in mathematics. While requiring excellence, we work hard at providing the environment for achieving it.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 7 years

Campus Location:

Main Campus

Students are able to complete the degree program through classes offered before 4:30 p.m. Students are able to complete the degree program on a part-time basis (8 credit hours or less per semester).

Department Information:

Department of Mathematics
638 Wachman Hall (038-16)
1805 North Broad Street
Philadelphia PA 19122



The Ph.D. program is designed to provide opportunities for education and research that are commensurate with national standards. Faculty are active in professional meetings and initiatives organized by the American Mathematical Society and the Mathematical Association of America.


Not applicable.

Areas of Specialization:

The department offers a great variety of choices for areas of specialization. Areas in which there is a strong research presence include computational mathematics, numerical analysis, mathematics of materials, mathematical physics, related probability and mathematical statistics, algebra, algebraic and analytic number theory, combinatorics, several complex variables, harmonic analysis, partial differential equations, differential and computational geometry and topology, and global geometry. Both prospective and matriculated students are encouraged to browse faculty web pages and contact faculty directly for more detailed information regarding areas of specialization and opportunities for further research.

Job Placement:

Graduates either continue advanced educational programs or pursue employment in industry, education, or government laboratories and agencies.


The mathematics program at Temple University is affiliated with the American Mathematical Society and the Mathematical Association of America.

Interdisciplinary Study:

The program encourages interdisciplinary coursework, research, and interactions among faculty and students with interest in computer and information sciences, physical and life sciences, statistics, and engineering.

Study Abroad:

Department faculty are active internationally and sometimes travel overseas for conferences and extended research visits. In some cases, it may be possible for students to participate in these activities as well.


Not applicable.

Non-Degree Student Policy:

Non-matriculated students must coordinate coursework with the graduate chair.

Financing Opportunities

Teaching assistants teach basic undergraduate mathematics courses, ranging from remedial courses through calculus. The standard teaching load is 20 hours per term. In determining the load, credit is given for more difficult and challenging teaching assignments. Research Assistantships are sometimes available, typically through special projects and grants. Support generally covers stipend and tuition, up to 9 credits per term.

Other Financial Opportunities