Joint Major Requirements
Mathematical and computational methods are vital to many areas of contemporary biological research, such as genomics, molecular modeling, structural biology, ecology, evolutionary biology, neurobiology, and systems biology. Conversely, biology is providing new challenges that can drive the development of novel mathematical and computational methods.
Harvey Mudd students interested in the interface between biology, mathematics, and computer science may pursue the Mathematical and Computational Biology Major, which is jointly administered by the biology, mathematics, and computer science departments.
This major prepares students for graduate studies in areas including applied mathematics, bioinformatics, computational biology, genome science, mathematical biology, and diverse areas of biology, as well as employment in industry.
Harvey Mudd’s Core curriculum provides mathematical and computational biology majors with a strong multidisciplinary foundation, and the College offers many opportunities for students to engage in interdisciplinary research in biomathematics, computational biology, and quantitative biology.
Students who choose this major become immersed in the scientific and intellectual cultures of biology, computer science, and mathematics, and the major is sufficiently flexible to allow students to concentrate in a particular area of interest. Students in this major have one advisor from the biology department and one advisor from either the mathematics or computer science departments. The advisors will jointly help the student plan a program tailored to the student’s interests and goals.
Requirements for the Degree
- One biology seminar
- One biology laboratory
Any Two of the Following:
Mathematical and Computation Courses
One 3-credit Mathematics Course
One 3-credit mathematics course chosen with the advisor. Suggested mathematics course options include (but are not limited to)
One 3-credit Computer Science Course
One 3-credit computer science course chosen with the advisor. Suggested computer science course options include (but are not limited to)
Five Credits of Additional Coursework
Five credits of additional coursework in mathematics or computer science
Electives and Thesis
- One technical elective chosen with the advisor (3 credits): Any course related to the student’s interests in the major. Possible courses satisfying this requirement could be in biology, computer science, or mathematics or in another field including (but not limited to), chemistry, bioengineering, cognitive science, neuroscience, biophysics, or linguistics.
- Two semesters of senior thesis or Clinic, selected in consultation with the student’s academic advisors (6 credits)
Colloquium and Forum
Students studying abroad during their junior or senior years are excused from one semester of the Biology colloquium requirement.