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Graduate Certificate in Mathematics

Graduate Certificate in Mathematics

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We do not require you to take the GRE to get into our program.

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Faculty Invested in your success

Our students enjoy the benefits of small classes and a close relationship with ESU  faculty.

Program description

Emporia State University’s Graduate Certificate in mathematics program is flexible so you can reach your personal goals in the way that will best fit your needs. Our classes are available on-campus and online, allowing you to decide when and how you take your classes.

The program allows you to select courses to emphasize the area of mathematics you want to pursue, such as applied mathematics, statistics, algebra or analysis. This 18-hour program is for those not seeking a M.S. degree but do need hours of graduate coursework to teach at a community college level or teach dual-credit high school courses.

Admission Requirements

General Information

Applications are submitted to the graduate office. To start on your application, visit Graduate Admissions.

Applicants must also submit transcripts of all previous college work to the graduate office.

The department reviews completed applications at the first of every month.

We do not require you to take the GRE.

You may enroll in a course as a non-degree-seeking student while your application is pending. If your application is accepted, that course will apply toward your degree (up to a maximum of 12 credit hours). However, once you decide to enter the program, it is to your advantage to complete the application because there is an additional application fee for enrolling as a non-degree-seeking student.

Recommended Background

Applicants who have completed 24 credit hours of undergraduate mathematics, including at least two semesters of Calculus and at least one course where writing mathematical proofs is a significant part of the content, are viewed favorably.

An undergraduate degree in mathematics, mathematics education, or an area with a significant mathematics requirement is preferred.

In general, success in our programs requires familiarity with the content of the first two semesters of a typical Calculus sequence as well as experience in writing mathematical proofs.


Questions about the application process or about graduate study at ESU in general should be directed to the Graduate Office or 1-800-950-GRAD.

To apply to the program, go to Graduate Admissions.

To register for courses and to get information about tuition and fees, go to Distance Education.

For information about financial aid, go to Financial Aid.

Questions about the master's degree program or the certificate program should be directed to our Graduate Coordinator, Dr. Chad Wiley at You may request additional information about the certificate program from the Graduate School.

Degree Requirements

From the courses listed below, students must take

  • MA 701: Mathematical Proofs (if admitted for Fall 2016 or later)
  • 3 credit hours in Analysis
  • 3 credit hours in Algebra
  • 3 credit hours in Statistics or Applied Mathematics
  • 18 total credit hours (6 courses)



MA 715 Topology 3 hours
MA 734 Complex Variables 3 hours
MA 735 Advanced Calculus I 3 hours
MA 736 Advanced Calculus II 3 hours
MA737 Functions of a Real Variable 3 hours


MA 728 Vector Spaces 3 hours
MA 740 Number Theory 3 hours
MA 741 Group Theory 3 hours
MA 742 Ring Theory 3 hours
MA 743 Field Theory 3 hours
MA 746 Computational Algebraic Geometry 3 hours

Statistics and Applied Mathematics

MA 531 Financial Mathematics 3 hours
MA 532 Mathematical Statistics I 3 hours
MA 731 SAS 3 hours
MA 732 Categorical Data Analysis 3 hours
MA 733 Mathematical Statistics II 3 hours
MA 738 Applied Differential Equations 3 hours
MA 739 Applied Analysis 3 hours
MA 758 Wavelets 3 hours
MA 760 Numerical Analysis 3 hours
MA 762 Optimization Techniques 3 hours
MA 763 Simulation Techniques 3 hours
MA 764 Regression Analysis 3 hours
MA 765 Numerical Linear Algebra 3 hours
MA 766 Nonparametric Statistics 3 hours
MA 767 Multivariate Data Analysis 3 hours
MA 768 Design of Experiments 3 hours
MA 769 Spatial Data Analysis 3 hours
MA 770 Bayesian Data Analysis 3 hours

Electives and Other Topics

MA 510 Technology in Mathematics* 3 hours
MA 701 Mathematical Proofs 3 hours
MA 714 Knot Theory 3 hours
MA 721 Projective Geometry 3 hours
MA 722 Non-Euclidean Geometry 3 hours
MA 757 Graph Theory 3 hours
MA 791 Introduction to Mathematical Logic 3 hours
MA 791 Combinatory Logic 3 hours
MA 793 Mathematics in the Common Core Standards* 3 hours
EC 710 Econometrics I 3 hours
EC 711 Econometrics II 3 hours
EC 712 Economic Theory 3 hours
EC 713 Seminar in Mathematical Economics 3 hours
EC 737 Game Theory 3 hours
ID 745 Programming and Data Analysis for Informatics 3 hours

* These courses are considered non-core courses since they are focused on math education. They cannot be applied toward the Graduate Certificate in Mathematics.


Cost and Financial Aid

For information about tuition and fees, visit Distance Education.

Unlike students enrolled in the M.S. in Mathematics program, students enrolled in the Graduate Certificate program are not eligible for financial aid or assistantships.

Most courses require exams to be proctored. Students are responsible for finding a suitable proctor and paying any associated fees.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of a Graduate Certificate in Mathematics?

The Graduate Certificate in mathematics is intended for high school teachers teaching dual/concurrent enrollment courses and community college faculty who need additional graduate study in order to meet the minimum qualifications of the Higher Learning Commission and other regional accreditors. Note that each institution offering college-level instruction retains sole responsibility for determining if and how its faculty members meet the accreditor’s faculty qualifications.

Is it possible to complete the program completely online?

Yes. We offer a number of online courses each semester, giving students multiple classes to choose from and take.

How do the online courses work?

It varies a bit from course to course, and it is constantly evolving as new technologies become available. Broadly speaking, our classes come in two varieties. Some classes are offered purely online. There are no physical meetings, although most classes include online chats that function similarly to office hours. Instruction in these classes takes a variety of forms, including textbook readings, instructor-made videos, and/or tutorial worksheets. Assignments are collected, graded, and returned on a regular basis. Exams require that the student arrange a proctor. Other classes are offered in a hybrid format. These courses are taught on the ESU campus with regular lectures, which are broadcast online using web conference software. Online students can log in during the class time and participate along with the on-campus students. These lectures are also recorded so that students who cannot log in during class time can catch up later. Otherwise, these classes are the same as the online courses (assignments, exams, etc.).

Can I transfer graduate classes I've taken at another university into the Graduate Certificate in Mathematics?

Yes, with restrictions. ESU policy allows students to transfer up to 9 credit hours of graduate courses from other universities. The courses must have been taken for graduate credit, and you must have received a B- or better. Only courses that focus on graduate-level mathematics are eligible, and all transfer courses must be approved the graduate committee. Courses taken more than 7 years prior to graduation may not be applied to the Graduate Certificate in Math program. Be sure to take your expected date of completion into account when requesting courses to be transferred.

If I begin the Graduate Certificate program, can I later switch to the M.S. in mathematics program?

Yes, with restrictions. Up to 12 credit hours from the Graduate Certificate in Mathematics program may be applied towards the M.S. in mathematics degree. A separate application to the M.S. in mathematics program is also required.

What kinds of students are in the graduate programs?

We have students from a variety of backgrounds and locations. Originally our program was populated with math teachers in eastern Kansas, and we still have many such students. Now, students from all over the U.S. and beyond make up the program. We have students with backgrounds in teaching, pure and applied mathematics, engineering, computer science, and other subjects.

Is there opportunity for student interaction?

Definitely. As previously mentioned, most classes include at least one weekly online chat (via web conference software) that allows students to discuss class material, ask questions, and generally interact with the instructor and with each other. Courses also include discussion boards that allow students to ask and answer questions throughout the week.

How many courses can I take each semester?

You can take as many as you can handle. Until recently, we often only offered one online course per semester. This is not as limiting as it sounds. Most of our students have full time jobs, and one course a semester is essentially a full load for them. A graduate level mathematics course is a significant time commitment! However, with the expansion of our program, we now offer multiple classes each semester, so it is possible to take two or even three courses in a single semester for those not working.

How long will it take to complete the program?

That depends on how many courses you can handle in a semester. The program requires 18 credit hours, which consists of 6 courses. Most students take 1-2 courses per semester.

Do you still have an active on-campus program?

Yes, we do. Although many of our courses are taken by both off-campus and on-campus students simultaneously, there are still a few courses offered each semester that are only available to on-campus students. In addition, on-campus students are eligible for teaching assistantships that pay a stipend and include a full tuition waiver.