Modules outside main discipline


All single honours students (G100 or G103) in this university are given the opportunity to take 20 credits in their first year in some School other than Mathematics. This is the Module Outside Main Discipline (MOMD). Usually this is taken as two linked 10 credit units, one in the Autumn and one in the Spring.

This does not apply to joint honours students or students doing a major-minor combination. In particular it doesn't apply to Maths and Sports Sciences, Maths with Psychology, Maths with Business Management, etc.

Students taking Mathematics with a year abroad (G141) must take their MOMD in a suitable linked language module.

The timetable slots for the MOMD are usually Wednesday 9-11, Thursday 9-10 and Friday 9-10.

You should go to the MOMD fair (Thursday of Freshers' week) to see what is available and register. This includes G141 students. Whatever MOMD you take you must do it seriously. It is an important part of your degree programme.

The maths MOMDs

We offer THREE related MOMDs to G100 and G103 students: MSM1X, MSM1Y and MSM1Z.

MSM1X: Impact of mathematics (06 22484)

MSM1X is designed for the majority of students.

In the autumn term, MSM1X covers Euclidean geometry. This is the kind of geometry that was once traditionally taught in schools, but is not on the A-level syllabus and rarely taught there now. Apart from providing a lot of useful background information, it is a beautiful subject in its own right, and is very logical and elegant. In particular geometrical results are proved in a rigorous way and this subject is a good way to start learning about how to read and write mathematical proofs, something that many students have difficulties with when adjusting from school maths to university maths.

In the spring term, MSM1X will cover a number of other mathematical topics, showing how mathematics is applied in the real world. These may include finance, logic circuits, coding, fractals, and others.

MSM1Y: Developing Mathematical Reasoning and the Impact of mathematics (06 18777)

MSM1Y is slightly more ambitious and gives a flavour of maths research without requiring additional background knowledge.

MSM1Y is intended for more ambitious students. No additional background knowledge is required, but in the spring term you will do much more creative and exploratory work on your own. It is intended to give a flavour of research mathematics but without any specialised or difficult background knowledge required. Students who think they might be interested to take their mathematics to the fourth year level and do a project in mathematics would be strongly recommended to take this, though it is not a prerequisite for fourth year work.

In the autumn term, MSM1Y shares the same material, lectures and classes as MSM1X, that is it covers traditional Euclidean geometry. In the spring term you will work in smaller classes on geometrical problems set by the lecturer. The main difference is that rather being told what you need to know by the lecturer you will be experimenting and finding out for yourself. The objective will be that you will eventually solve the problems set and be able to write your solution in a rigorous and comprehensible way. As well as presentation skills and problem solving skills you will find that material you discover for yourself is much easier to learn and remember.

MSM1Z: Complementary Mathematics (06 22780)

MSM1Z is intended for those students that think they might need some extra help in adapting to university mathematics.

In the autumn term, MSM1Z is is concerned particularly with developing and extending skills in core mathematics such as calculus and algebra. (It is not suitable for students who already have strong skills in these areas, such as students with grade A in Further Maths.) The first term's work includes a large proportion of computer work where you can work at your own pace and attempt as many additional exercises until you are confident with the material. There are additional exercise classes for written work and a minimum of lectures. By the end of the term you will have developed your skills and confidence to help with other core mathematics modules such as MSM1A.

In the spring, MSM1Z students follow the same material as students doing MSM1X.

If you want to take maths as your MOMD

We have limited space available on the modules MSM1Y and MSM1Z, and these modules are not suitable for all students. If you want to take one of these modules please indicate in the first computer lab you attend on Monday or Tuesday on the first week. Similarly if you wish to take an MOMD outside maths, please indicate then. There will be a number of people you can discuss your choices with at these computer labs.

The first year director will consider all such requests as soon as possible and in any case by 1pm on the Tuesday of first week and email students back with any comments or responses. As far as possible your request will be honoured, but the year director's decision is final.

In particular, because of limited numbers for MSM1Z you will not be allowed to take this module if you have very strong A-level grades. If you are a G100 student with strong grades, you could consider transferring to G103 anyway.

You are very strongly recommended to take MSM1Z if you are a G100 student and either your A-level grades are not so strong or if you did not take further maths. G103 students are recommended to take MSM1X or MSM1Y, but there may be one or two exceptional cases of G103 students wanting to take MSM1Z.

The first timetabled slot for MSM1Z is the computer lab on Tuesday at 2pm. In the first week this time will be available for all students who think they want to or ought to take MSM1Z. It will give us a chance to discuss any questions that you have and ensure that the number of students on this module is appropriate.

The only requirement for MSM1Y is that you should have grade A at maths A-level, so if you are interested in this module and want to take something a little more challenging then do please consider it.

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