The Mathematics Department is one of several departments at Middlebury that requires senior work.

In our case this requirement takes the form of a 700-level seminar. This is intended to be the capstone experience in the major where you explore an advanced topic in significant depth and complete a 20-25 page thesis paper.

The department typically offers four senior seminars each year. The topics are chosen by faculty members and offered on a rotating basis. Each seminar usually requires one or two advanced prerequisites. The seminars are announced a year in advance so students have time to prepare.

Curriculum Overview

Enrollment in each seminar is capped at nine. In the first half of the semester, the group collectively explores the central themes and theorems of the seminar topic. By mid-semester you will be asked to focus on a subtopic of your choosing, which you then investigate independently in the last six weeks of the term. In some cases, your research might be a survey of known results of interest to you and your advisor, in some cases it might be an application of a learned technique to a new problem, and in some exceptional cases you might attempt to do original research into a previously unsolved problem. No matter what you decide to do, you will experience the following:

  • Researching mathematical literature,
  • Working independently,
  • Organizing, revising, and writing a major paper on the subject.

Presentation day is a festive occasion. You get to be the expert and share the results of your semester’s work with friends, professors, and classmates. It is a day to celebrate and be proud.

Recent 700-Level Courses

Fall 2020

  • 0732 Topology Seminar (Swenton)
  • 0745 Polynomial Method Seminar (Schmitt)

Spring 2020

  • 0701 Galois Theory (Proctor)
  • 0703 Finite Fields Seminar (Bremser)
  • 0710 Advanced Probability Seminar (Peterson)

Fall 2019

  • 0715 Advanced Math Modeling Seminar (Olinick)
  • 0741 Advanced Number Theory (Schumer)

Spring 2019

  • 0710 Advanced Probability Seminar (Peterson)
  • 0723 Topics in Analysis Seminar (Abbott)

Fall 2018

  • 0702 Advanced Topics in Algebra and Number Theory (Dorman)
  • 0745 Polynomial Method Seminar (Schmitt)