The Department of Mathematics at the University of Idaho currently has 16 professors who teach and conduct research, two post-doctoral research fellows, 10 instructors, 13 teaching assistants and six research assistants. Many of our best students participate as undergraduates in research with our faculty. Our program is well known for its research efforts in a variety of areas, including:
- Combinatorics and discrete mathematics
- Algebraic geometry
- Differential equations
- Probability and mathematical biology
Our math students are involved in a diverse array of activities campus wide. Our undergraduate Math Club hosts a variety of events throughout the school year. We also field a team in the Putnam Exam competition each year, coached by several of our faculty members. The Putnam Exam is the premier problem-solving contest for undergraduate mathematics programs, and we’re very proud of our team’s performance. In the most recent competition, University of Idaho placed 46th out of more than 500 participating schools.
Here is an example of a groundbreaking research project happening on campus:
- Bioinformatics and Mathematical Biology: Our research in mathematical biology employs tools from stochastic processes, differential equations and statistics. Topics being actively investigated include population genetics, evolutionary biology, biofilms, ecology and epidemiology.
The department’s bioinformatics group, along with other departments, has recently attracted more than $20 million in multi-year funding. This means there is more money for research and additional funding to enhance undergraduate course work. In addition, the high-tech Polya Math Learning Center is a one-of-a-kind environment that provides an innovative lab experience. Many of our mathematics majors find opportunities to work part time in the Polya Math Learning Center as tutors.