MA in Mathematics

Total units required for MA: 30, including at least 24 units of approved 200-level courses

Program Description

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics offers a Master of Arts degree in Mathematics. The MA program is designed to provide qualified students with an opportunity to increase the breadth and depth of their mathematical knowledge and understanding. Beyond assuring that successful candidates are proficient in the basic areas of mathematics, the program is sufficiently flexible to permit graduates to pursue individual professional and mathematical interests ranging from teaching at the secondary or community college level to a career in the private sector, to preparation for graduate study beyond the master's degree. Graduate courses are usually offered in the late afternoon to accommodate students who work full-time.

Admission Requirements

Admission as a classified graduate student in Mathematics requires:

  • an undergraduate major in Mathematics which includes one year each of Modern Algebra and Advanced Calculus or an undergraduate major in a related field together with one year each of Modern Algebra and Advanced Calculus;
  • a minimum 2.5 GPA; and
  • a minimum 2.5 GPA in the last 60 units attempted and a 3.0 GPA in Mathematics coursework.

Students who have deficiencies in admission requirements that can be removed by specified additional preparation may be admitted with conditionally classified graduate status. Any such deficiencies will be noted on a written response to the admission application. No credit will be given towards the MA for the following:

MATH 110AModern Algebra3
MATH 110BModern Algebra3
MATH 130AFunctions of a Real Variable3
MATH 130BFunctions of a Real Variable3

Admission Procedures

Applications are accepted as long as room for new students exists. However, students are strongly urged to apply by the posted university application deadline for the fall or spring terms, in order to allow time for admission before registration. All prospective graduate students, including Sacramento State graduates, must file the following with the Office of Graduate Studies, River Front Center 215, (916) 278-6470:

  • an online application for admission; and
  • two sets of official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended, other than Sacramento State.

For more admissions information and application deadlines please visit

Admission decisions are made approximately six to eight weeks after the application deadline date.  Applicants will be notified of an admission decision via e-mail.

Minimum Unit and Grade Requirement for the Degree

Units required for the MA:  30 (including at least 24 units of approved 200-level courses).

Minimum Cumulative GPA:  3.0

Note: A foreign language is not required for the MA degree. However, students who plan further graduate study are encouraged to take coursework in French, German, or Russian since proficiency in two of these languages is usually required in doctoral programs.

Advancement to Candidacy

Each student must file an application for Advancement to Candidacy, indicating a proposed program of graduate study. This procedure should begin as soon as the classified graduate student has:

  • removed any deficiencies in admission requirements;
  • completed at least 18 units in the graduate program with a minimum 3.0 GPA, including at least 12 units at the 200 level; and
  • taken the Writing Placement for Graduate Students (WPG) or taken a Graduate Writing Intensive (GWI) course in their discipline within the first two semesters of coursework at California State University, Sacramento or secured approval for a WPG waiver.

Advancement to Candidacy forms are available on the Office of Graduate Studies website. The student fills out the form after planning a degree program in consultation with a Mathematics advisor. The completed form is then returned to the Office of Graduate Studies for approval.

Program Requirements

Required Courses (27 Units)
MATH 210AAlgebraic Structures 13
MATH 210BAlgebraic Structures 13
MATH 230AReal Analysis 13
MATH 230BReal Analysis 13
Select four from the following:12
Topics In Topology
Complex Analysis
Topics in Complex Analysis
Methods of Applied Mathematics
Topics in Applied Mathematics
Introduction to Mathematical Statistics
Topics in Introduction to Mathematical Statistics
Select one of the following with advisor approval:3
Special Problems
Electives in mathematics and related disciplines
Culminating Requirement (3 Units)
Written Comprehensive Examination3
Total Units30