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Doctor of Philosophy in Applied Mathematics


The Ph.D. program provides advanced education through coursework (including independent study) and original, creative research in order to prepare students for careers in industrial research and academia.



Admission to the Ph.D. program normally requires a bachelor's degree in mathematics or applied mathematics. Candidates whose degree is in another field (for example, computer science, physics, or engineering) and whose background in mathematics is strong are also eligible for admission and are encouraged to apply. Candidates in the Ph.D. program must also have demonstrated the potential for conducting original research in applied mathematics. Students must remove deficiencies in essential undergraduate courses that are prerequisites for the degree program, in addition to fulfilling all other degree requirements. A cumulative graduate GPA of 3.5/4.0 is usually required. At least three letters of recommendation are required. Applicants must submit Graduate Record Examination scores. The following minimum GRE scores are required:

  • Ph.D: 304 (quantitative + verbal) 3.0 (analytical writing), test scores before 2011: 1100 (quantitative + verbal)

A TOEFL score of 550/213/80 (paper/computer/internet test score) is required if an applicant is from a non-English speaking country.

» Click here for the admissions page of the IIT Graduate College.

Program Requirements 


All IIT Graduate School requirements must be satisfied. Specific departmental requirements are:

  • 72 credit hours, for students entering with a bachelor's degree.
  • Core courses. Every student must take
    • MATH 500 (Applied Analysis I),
    • MATH 577 (Computational Mathematics I),
    and three of the following five courses:
    • MATH 501 (Applied Analysis II)
    • MATH 540 (Probability)
    • MATH 553 (Discrete Applied Mathematics I)
    • MATH 563 (Mathematical Statistics)
    • MATH 578 (Computational Mathematics II)
    Students must maintain a GPA of at least 3.25 in core courses.
  • Qualifying Exams. Students must pass three written exams at the Ph.D. level, on
    • MATH 500 (Applied Analysis I),
    • MATH 577 (Computational Mathematics I), and one of the following:
    • MATH 540, 553, or 563 (Probability, Discrete Applied Math I, or Mathematical Statistics)
    Students must pass one qualifying exam by the end of their third semester, and must pass all three by the end of their fifth semester. Students can attempt each exam twice, if needed. The exams will be offered twice every year, one in the Fall (October or November) and the other in Spring (March or April). Students can take one, two or three exams each semester.
  • Elective courses and applications area requirement. Besides the core courses, the remaining courses in the program are selected in consultation with the student's academic adviser. The program must include two to four courses in an area of concentration outside of the department, as approved by the Director of Graduate Studies. These may include up to three 400-level courses.
  • Comprehensive Exam.  This is an oral examination based on the student's research proposal. The aim is to ensure that the student has the background to carry out successful research in his/her chosen area and the proposed research has sufficient scholarly merit.
  • 24 to 36 credit hours devoted to thesis research (MATH 691).
  • Dissertation (thesis), which is expected to contain a distinct and substantial, original and publishable contribution to the field of study.
  • Thesis Defense. An oral examination in defense of the thesis constitutes completion of the degree.
  • The colloqium/seminar course MATH 593 (must take it six times with a satisfactory grade).

Exceptions to these general rules require approval by the departmental Graduate Studies Committee.

» View graduate course descriptions