Undergraduate study - 2021 entry

Subject area: Mathematics

Why choose Mathematics at the University of Edinburgh?

  • We're ranked in the UK's top 5 universities for mathematics in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2020.

  • Our teaching focuses on fostering interactive engagement that promotes long-term understanding. In early years particularly, you will engage in small group discussion on problems that are answered via online voting systems. We actively encourage collaborative working and use open book exams in early years to emphasise understanding.

  • There are many opportunities to develop your skills and CV alongside academic work. Our outreach team leads projects such as building a fractal from 40,000 business cards and assembling mathematical artwork for an exhibition. You can become a MathPALs Leader or Student Ambassador, apply for one of our project scholarships to work with a lecturer during the summer or get involved with external projects such as Hyperloop.

Study abroad

Studying here has been an absolute privilege. The flexibility between programmes allowed me to explore a huge variety of topics and specialise in those I am most interested in.

Jordana Black BSc (Hons) Mathematics graduate
Jordana Black BSc (Hons) Mathematics graduate

Introducing Mathematics

Mathematics is central to everyday life and to the way we see the world. It is an intellectual adventure in its own right but it is also used to understand the physical world - from gravitational waves to climate change - and to find solutions in business and industry.

Our BSc and MA degrees take four years, and our MMath degree takes five years.

All of our students take the same compulsory courses in their early years and it is normally possible to switch between our different programmes in Years 1 and 2. Due to this flexibility, we recommend applying for only one of our programmes.

As part of your degree programme, you will study courses from other subjects in Years 1 and 2, in addition to mathematics. These other subjects may be in related areas, such as physics or informatics, or may be chosen from the wide and varied range offered across the University such as philosophy, economics or languages. From Year 3 onwards, you will only study your degree subjects.

In later years you can select classes from a wide range of mathematical disciplines. Our broad-ranging research supports advanced courses in areas such as analysis, algebra and geometry, and applied topics such as statistics, operational research, finance, data science, mathematical education and mathematical biology.

Accelerated Programme

It is also possible for well-prepared applicants to follow an accelerated programme via second year entry. By following the accelerated programme, our BSc degree takes three years, and the MMath degree takes four.

On the accelerated programme, your studies will be focused on mathematics, rather than studying a broad range of subjects. Alongside your Year 2 mathematics courses, you will be supported with extra accelerated courses covering the key ideas in algebra, calculus and proofs from Year 1 of the programme.

This challenging option is available for a select number of our programmes.


Scholarships are available to full-time undergraduates studying at the School of Mathematics. Scholarships are offered to students of outstanding ability for the duration of their studies, subject to satisfactory academic progress each year.

School of Mathematics Scholarships