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Mathematics courses for PhD Business (Information Systems) [#permalink]
26 Oct 2007, 07:24

Hi,

I am applying for PhD in Business (Information Systems) Now almost all Indian bachelors and masters programs have little mathematics courses past the basic courses which is calculus, calculus based probability and statistics and quantitative techniques like game theory, optimization, simulation, linear programming, markov chain processes and decision theory which are basically part of operations research.

So, anyway, I have registered for 32 credits of year long math courses via distance education since opportunities to take such courses are nil outside an Indian curriculum.

My courses range from calculus, multivariate calculus, calc based probability and statistics, real analysis, numerical analysis, differential equations, discrete mathematics and linear algebra. Is this ok or just overkill. I can reduce the number of courses if I want to (saves money !!)

Also, these courses finish in June 2008 and I am applying for Fall 2008 session so results wont be available . It seems that IS programs require quite a bit of math (more than I would have thought necessary !!) Will this count against me ? or will the adcoms recognize this situation?

Do you know what schools you are interested in applying to?

My strategy has been to 1) find the topics I'm interested in researching and 2) finding the professor(s) I would like to work with and secure as my advisor(s). These are huge issues when you're seeking a program to enter. You need a good advisor to make it through the program and your statement of intent has to reflect the department's interests. I reference specific research and professors I want to work with in my statement of intent. As a pre-cursor to this, I recommend studying their manuscripts and reading over the dissertations of the students that have studied under them.

Once you know your top schools, looking specifically at their requirements. I've found that going too "big picture" can become overwhelming.

I would recommend contacting some of the PhD students at the schools you are interested in and ask their opinion. To get the full picture, I recommend contacting first year students and PhD candidates. You can usually find their contact information on the school's Web site. I've always found them to be a great resource if you're looking for school-specific information.

I'm not sure about the math base for information technology. I assume a lot of PhDs in this area have a pretty extensive math background. I can't see how having extra math courses will hurt your application. However, it could be a hinderance if you think taking extra courses will interfere time-wise with other vital aspects of your application such as determining research interests, schools/profs you're interested in, etc.

I have shortlisted several schools and some of their professors have expressed a willingness to talk to me more about my intended line of research as it matches with them really well.

Thats basically what I want, me matching my research interests with the professor under whom I would like to research.