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Questions tagged [career-development]

Questions on mathematical career development. Consider whether your question is more appropriate for Academia Stack Exchange.

17
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5answers
1k views

Do mathematicians Switch Fields of Expertise?

I'm curious if it is common or quite rare for mathematicians to change their area of expertise, whether it be after their PHD or mid-career, how radical this change might be, whether it's often for ...
7
votes
0answers
935 views

Transitioning from Statistics to Pure Math at the PhD level [closed]

I was not sure if I should even post this question at this site because it is not directly related to mathematics, but rather, careers in mathematics. First of all, I have a B.S. in pure math. ...
18
votes
1answer
3k views

Can an older person become an expert in math? [closed]

Is learning math like learning a language, in that there's a certain cutoff age (pretty young) that you need to start learning by, otherwise you'll never be fluent? Is the novice older brain ...
926
votes
29answers
83k views

Can I use my powers for good? [closed]

I hesitate to ask this question, but I read a lot of the career advice from MathOverflow and math.stackexchange, and I couldn't find anything similar. Four years after the PhD, I am pretty sure that ...
25
votes
5answers
3k views

Is it possible to be a mathematician without being mathematically talented? [closed]

Apparently I'm not mathematically talented enough to be hired as a postdoc. Is there any way to earn a living while continuing to do mathematics I love (commutative algebra)? I don't like teaching or ...
27
votes
1answer
3k views

How difficult is it to get an academic job? [closed]

Like many others here, I hope to someday become a professor. I've heard that it's very, very difficult and competitive in pure math, and I thought I would come here to ask your opinions. For those of ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

What about Genetic Algorithms from a mathematical point of view?

Last year I've attended an Artificial Intelligence course (it was very simple, just a summary of the main ideas); we've seen what a genetic algorithm is and the idea seems very interesting to me. Now ...
41
votes
1answer
12k views

Grad school with low undergrad GPA [closed]

I'm hoping to apply to grad schools this fall. I think I'm a reasonably good candidate, one aspect aside -- I have around a 2.5 undergraduate GPA in-major and failed several math classes in college. ...
26
votes
4answers
1k views

Are there any common practices in mathematics to guard against mistakes?

It occurred to me that math is somewhat like programming (or vice-versa, if you prefer) because, in both, it is easy to make mistakes or overlook them, and the smallest error or misguided assumption ...
1
vote
1answer
734 views

Advice about a career interest in Mathematics [closed]

I am a graduate student and am into 2 years of PhD. My current specialization is in signal processing. During this period, in my spare time, i came up with an idea which seems to be a research ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Publishing elementary proofs of theorems

I'm an undergraduate student and I believe I found another proof of Heron's formula. I have a bunch of questions: I would like to publish this "proof" (I haven't found mistakes yet) in some magazine. ...
68
votes
4answers
14k views

String Theory: What to do?

This is going to be a relatively broad/open-ended question, so I apologize before hand if it is the wrong place to ask this. Anyways, I'm currently a 3rd year undergraduate starting to more seriously ...
21
votes
3answers
4k views

Research Experience for Undergraduates: Summer Programs (that accept non-American applicants)

There are many summer research programs in the United States, targeted at good motivated undergraduate students majoring in mathematics. The main aspects that characterize such programs are: (a) a ...
65
votes
9answers
10k views

Does it ever make sense NOT to go to the most prestigious graduate school you can get into? [closed]

I'm a senior undergrad at a top-ish(say, top 15) math school. I'm a solid, not stellar, student. This year I'm taking the qualifying exam grad courses in algebra and analysis and have been taken aback ...