Master of Arts Degree Program

The Department of Mathematics offers a Master of Arts (M.A.) in Mathematics designed for students who wish to study mathematics at an advanced level. Within this degree program, students may choose to complete the traditional track or the teaching option. The traditional track best satisfies the needs of students who wish to work in industry, teach at community college, or go on to pursue a Ph.D. in mathematics. The teaching option is designed especially for students who wish to enhance their high school mathematics teaching and/or assume a leadership role in high school mathematics education and beyond or who wish to pursue an advanced degree in mathematics education.

Detailed information may be found in the Department of Mathematics Graduate Studies Handbook.

Why Should I Get a Master’s Degree in Mathematics?

The benefits of earning a master’s degree in mathematics include the following:

  • A master’s degree opens the door to more job opportunities in industry.
    • Many positions in research and development require at least a master’s degree, either in mathematics or a related field. 
    • Both private firms and federal agencies hire people with a master’s degree for work in various areas, such as mathematical modeling, computer graphics, cryptography, etc.
  • Teaching at the community college level requires a master’s degree at minimum.
  • Taking a leadership role at the secondary education level requires a master’s degree, and the Teaching Option is well-suited for this goal.
  • An easier transition to a doctoral program in mathematics, applied mathematics, or a related field, or in mathematics education (with the Teaching Option).


In order to be admitted to the Master of Arts program in Mathematics (either Traditional or Teaching Option), you must do the following.

  • First apply to the University through CSUMentor.
  • In order to be admitted to the program you must have earned a Bachelor's degree, preferably in Mathematics.
  • In order to achieve classified standing (i.e., full admission), applicants should:
    • have undergraduate preparation in mathematics comparable to that of a typical mathematics major at Fresno State and
    • have a 3.0 grade point average in the their upper division mathematics courses.
  • Applicants lacking the above preparation may be admitted conditionally. These students will become classified after meeting additional requirements as set by the Graduate Coordinator. Coursework required to achieve classified status may not be applied towards credits for the graduate program.
  • All applicants are required to take the GRE Mathematics subject test. Applicants’ GRE Mathematics subject test scores are expected to be at least 500. In addition, two letters of recommendation from faculty at the applicant’s undergraduate institution are required. Letters should be sent directly to:

    Dr. Doreen De Leon, Graduate Coordinator
    Department of Mathematics
    California State University, Fresno
    5245 North Backer Avenue, M/S PB 108 
    Fresno, CA 93740-8001

  • In addition to completing the application at CSUMentor and sending two letters of recommendation to the Graduate Coordinator, you must also send to the appropriate admissions office your
    • GRE subject - official scores, and
    • one official transcript for each college or university attended.

Domestic Students send documents to:

California State University, Fresno 
5150 N. Maple Ave. JA 57 
Fresno, CA 93740-8026

International Students mail documents to:

California State University, Fresno
Attn: International Admissions
5150 N. Maple Ave. JA 56
Fresno, CA 93740-8026

Admission Deadlines

For Fall admission, complete consideration will be given to applications received by April 15. However, the Mathematics Department will continue to accept applications until May 31, provided space is available in the program.

To be considered for Spring admission, complete applications should be received in the Mathematics Department by November 1.  Please note that our ability to offer Spring admissions is contingent on the State budget, and so offers will not be made until the budget is determined.