Credits? Semesters? What does this all mean exactly if you want to pursue your degree?
If you're like me, these terms don't really make sense for someone who has no knowledge about university hours or credits. That being said, it is important to know what to expect when studying for a degree, just like mathematics, so that you can gain some idea of what the student experience will be like for you.
Maybe all you want to do is figure out how much time you are going to spend studying for your mathematics degree, as well as the cost of studying for your degree in maths. We're here to decipher (by years!) how long a maths degree in Malaysia will take you to complete, as well as the extra time it may take you to complete your studies if you were to pursue a master's or PhD.
How long does it take to finish a mathematics degree?
Generally, students will take three years to complete a bachelor's degree in mathematics. By this time, you will have to think of which major in mathematics is right for you.
However, you may take a longer time to complete your degree.
You can complete your math degree within three years if you are doing a full-time study. Be that as it may, you may have to do a part-time study if you are already working and would like to continue doing so. With part-time studying, students may take as long as five years or more to complete their degree.
If you've read up on mathematics courses in Malaysia, you would have also found the option of taking an honours degree in mathematics. A math degree with honours will take you four years to complete, not three. However, the great thing about taking an honours degree is that it is often regarded as a higher level of academic achievement than a general standard degree.
An honours degree would typically have the word "Honours" (often shortened as "Hons") in its qualification. As compared to a general degree in mathematics that focuses on concepts like differential equations, you will be equipped with specialised research skills in maths as well as time management, planning and organisation skills that will benefit you in your career.
Another great advantage is that with an honours degree in maths, your application will stand out if you want to further your studies and even when you apply for jobs. So while it may take longer than the typical math degree, it is a wise option if you are interested in research or just want to have a better appeal to companies and organisations.
You can make many achievements with a degree in mathematics.
Total years so far: 3-4 years
How long is a master's degree in university math?
After your bachelor's in mathematics, you may want to consider doing a master's in the subject. Usually, students who opt to further their studies at the master's level seek to specialise in certain fields of maths, such as computational mathematics, functional analysis, and applied statistics. These specialisations in math often depend largely on one's career ambitions.
Which branch of maths works best for you?
In Malaysia, doing a degree at the master's level will take you about 1 to 2 years to complete. Most masters in mathematics programmes will make it a requisite for you to complete a thesis by the end of the course. So, research is one of the major components that you can expect when taking maths at the master's level, as well as learning how to communicate your ideas and findings to others.
Just like your undergraduate programme, you will also sit for assessments and coursework even in your master's degree. Nonetheless, the structure and depth of the topics you are learning may be different depending on the field of mathematics you want to specialise in at university.
How do I choose a specialisation?
It's important that you decide on a subject that interests you the most because most of your energy will be spent studying a particular area of maths. If you have more than one interest or if your interests overlap across different specialisations in math, then look for a common element among these areas to determine what it is exactly you want to focus your studies on.
Total years with master's: 4-6 years
Is getting a PhD in mathematics worth it?
Did you know you will spend about 3 to 5 years studying for a PhD in maths?
Although the average is closer to 3 years in Malaysia, that is still a considerable amount of time spent studying if what you really want to focus on is getting a job. Some people say that it's not worth your energy studying maths at the PhD level because there will be no job prospects, or that the qualification is not at all necessary for any industry position.
What can you do with a doctorate in maths?
Ironically, doing a PhD in mathematics not only shows your dedication to lifelong learning, but you'll also gain exceptional, transferable skills that will attract a multitude of institutions and organisations. As a PhD holder in maths, you will be regarded as a person of outstanding mathematical and logical ability, along with a strong commitment to realising research goals.
You can apply for many jobs with just a bachelor's degree, or better yet with a master's qualification, but these opportunities will grow if you decide to take on a PhD in mathematics. With this PhD qualification, you will be able to grow as a mathematician in Malaysia as well as be provided with a wide range of leadership opportunities.
That being said, it's still crucial that you think over your priorities before making the decision to do a doctorate in math. If you would rather work immediately after graduating with your bachelor's or master's in mathematics, then that may be the better option for you. However, if you are willing to put a little more time and effort into your interests, you could greatly benefit from doing a PhD.
Total years with PhD: 7-11 years
What entry requirements do you need for a maths degree?
Let's not forget that you will also have to spend some time taking an international foundation programme or another equivalent to gain entrance into a university maths degree. This is because to gain entrance into a maths degree in Malaysia, you will first have to complete a pre-university programme.
These pre-university programmes typically take 1 to 2 years to complete, such as A-Levels, AUSMAT or the local STPM examination. Remember that apart from completing any of these programmes, there are also other entry requirements to consider, such as fulfilling language requirements - often involving a proficiency test in a certain language.
This is usually the case for the English language which is the main medium of communication at the university level. So you may not be tested on your in-depth ability to apply differential equations just yet, but you will have to spend some time practising your problem-solving abilities when you take maths or additional mathematics at the pre-university level.
Do you know everything about maths degrees in Malaysia?
Total years completed: 8-13 years
How do I start learning mathematics?
Superprof is a community of tutors and learners from all over the world, with mathematics being a popular subject that is taught on the platform! Even if you are just sitting for your English language proficiency test, it's never too early to work on your analytical and problem-solving skills. After all, getting a good headstart goes a long way when you learn with a qualified and experienced tutor.
At Superprof, we value the quality and effort of our tutors - that is why we've ranked our tutors from Ambassador to Experienced. You can also get to know each tutor better by clicking on their profile and seeing how they are conducting their classes. Notice that there are many reviews and recommendations from previous and current students to help you gain a sense of the learning experience!
While some students are comfortable with online learning, you will also have the option of in-person classes with tutors in your area. At an affordable price of only RM39 per lesson, you can have a one-on-one math learning experience with your tutor. Nonetheless, you can also opt for group classes with your tutor, but be sure to check with them on their group size and number of students.
Did you know that we'll belanja your first lesson? All you have to do is sign up with Superprof. You can even determine how you want to receive notifications from your tutor in your account settings, or provide details of your current level of education so that our Superprof tutors' catalogue is tailored to your degree of learning. All these and more when you sign up for free!
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