The job of a Mathematician revolves mostly around numbers. There are two types of Mathematicians: theoretical ones, who use their skills to conduct scientific research based on mathematical principles and theories in order to improve the mathematical field; and applied Mathematicians, who take advantage of their knowledge and methods to apply them to several branches of Science to solve problems and design solutions. Moreover, Mathematicians can also apply their mathematical knowledge to the world of Economics and Finance, as well as for educational purposes when they work as Teachers or Professors in schools and universities.
A degree in Mathematics is quite versatile and can open many doors for people looking for job opportunities due to the high demand. Mathematicians can work in a wide variety of fields, the most common are Business Administration, Management, Accounting, Engineering and Banking, and they are usually employed by government agencies and educational institutions.
Here’s a non-exhaustive list of common tasks Mathematicians are required to complete.
- Solving problems by knowing and using mathematical techniques and theories in different areas, such as Business, Engineering, Science, and the Manufacturing Industry:
- Developing computational methods to solve problems based on observations;
- performing calculations and applying methods of numerical analysis on data;
- identifying trends and relationships among variables;
- determining appropriate methods for data analysis; and
- using mathematical principles to solve problems in applied Science.
- Analyzing and studying existing theories and principles:
- Trying to solve unexplained topics; and
- analyzing the relations between principles, data, methods, etc.
- Developing mathematical models of phenomena for analytical and study purposes:
- Designing computer models and mathematical simulations;
- studying the behavior of variables in phenomena based on mathematical theories;
- formulating hypotheses and carrying out experiments to verify them;
- collecting and documenting information based on findings; and
- applying findings to fields of applied Science and the advancement of Mathematics.
- Staying updated in their field of knowledge:
- Reading mathematical journals and published papers;
- liaising with other Mathematicians;
- attending professional conferences; and
- keeping track of new advancements and trends.
- Sharing their research and findings by writing reports, publishing papers, or speaking at professional conferences:
- Presenting research to colleagues; and
- preparing and explaining analytical reports.
- Designing, analyzing, and deciphering encryption systems based on mathematical algorithms:
- Making use of encryption methods to convey secret messages for military, Law Enforcement, or governmental use;
- analyzing security systems, networks, and data to ensure safety; and
- developing new codes and updating existing ones.
- Establishing new principles and relationships between mathematical doctrines to further contribute to scientific and technological development:
- Designing new mathematical and scientific models; and
- keeping up-to-date with the advances in their field in order to broaden their mathematical knowledge in the different areas (e.g. algebra, geometry, probability, statistics, and logic).
- Carrying out the necessary research to broaden their mathematical knowledge and staying updated in the field of Mathematics.
- Researching new mathematical theories and analyzing existing ones.
- Applying mathematical techniques and principles to solve problems.
- Creating mathematical models to work out problems and run simulations.
- Documenting and presenting research to colleagues.
- Teaching mathematical principles and methods to schools and university students.
- Designing and deciphering encryption codes.
The average Mathematician salary in USA is $80,733 per year or $41 per hour. This is around 2.8 times more than the Median wage of the country. Entry level positions start at $57,000 while most experienced workers make up to $113,000. These results are based on 11 salaries extracted from job descriptions.
- Outstanding mathematical and numerical skills:
- Understanding advanced mathematical methods, principles, and practices;
- being able to perform long and complex calculations;
- handling complex spreadsheets;
- conducting mathematical research; and
- designing mathematical models and simulations.
- Excellent computer skills:
- Understanding software-programming languages.
- Exceptional analytical and problem-solving skills:
- Processing long and complex calculations;
- designing and deciphering encryption codes;
- analyzing mathematical models and fixing problems;
- processing great amounts of data and information; and
- using creative thinking to solve complex problems.
- Good interpersonal and communication skills:
- Communicating and being able to explain complex mathematical procedures, using non-technical language when required;
- documenting and presenting research results in a clear and accurate manner; and
- liaising with colleagues to mutually extend knowledge and skills.
- Great time management and organizational skills:
- Being capable of taking on several tasks at the same time; and
- being able to work both independently and as part of a team.
- Adaptive personality with the ability to learn and apply new mathematical methods and principles quickly:
- Being resilient when facing challenges.
Job opportunities for Mathematicians are widely available in several fields. The educational requirements necessary for this job is possessing a bachelor’s or master’s degree in Mathematics, which can be obtained at most colleges and universities. However, private sectors require aspirants to have a doctoral degree, which is necessary to work as a Math Teacher in colleges and universities. Moreover, interested parties can get master and doctoral degrees in theoretical or applied math through several institutions.
Depending on the field they wish to engage in, further training may be necessary. Professional Mathematicians working in areas such as Banking, Administration, Business, Finance, or Economics may be required to have an extra degree in said areas or to possess at least 3 years of previous work experience in a related field.
Mathematicians may also work as Scientific Researchers and Investigators devoted to the development and advancement of their branch of Science. In these cases, they are usually employed by universities and other major houses of study. If they wish to pursue a teaching career, Mathematicians may choose to become school Teachers, or college or university Professors. Accreditation for these jobs usually comes from their academic achievements during their years of study.