1. Basic overview of the major
The undergraduate major “Mathematics and Applied Mathematics” under the School of Science which was a mathematical major set up to meet the need of social talents cultivation and the development of the university, was approved in 2007. The major began to recruit students in 2008. 40 students were enrolled for the first time.
Through the professional construction in recent years, the four-year undergraduate teaching plan of “Mathematics and Applied Mathematics” has been gradually improved and the faculty and relevant teaching facilities of the new major were equipped. The professional orientation and cultivation objectives are basically clear.
At present, there are already 4 terms of graduates under this major. In September 2013, the enrollment of the major was expanded to two classes with 197 full-time students and moderate scale. Two directions including “Financial Mathematics” and “Computational Science and Statistics” were set under the major.
The major puts the talents cultivation in the first place. It gives priority to the discipline construction and is oriented by social demands. It is aimed at cultivating applied technical talents with innovation spirit and practical ability. We are making great efforts to make undergraduate major “Mathematics and Applied Mathematics” perfect by combining the development plan of our school with the practical situation and following the principal of coordinated development among scale, structure, quality and efficiency.
2. Current situation of the major’s development
(1) Basic development status
1. Cultivation objectives and programs of the major
Professional orientation and talents cultivation objectives: According to the guidance of Ministry of Education, the major’s construction was carried out by combining it with overall orientation frame of the university. In order to meet the demands of economic development in Shanghai and surrounding areas, the talents cultivation direction was adjusted to two directions: (1)Financial Mathematics; (2)Computational Science and Statistics. The cultivation objectives: The major aims at cultivating application-oriented senior talents who own good mathematical literacy, certain knowledge about computer technology and finance, experience of preliminary training of scientific research and ability to solve practical problems by taking advantage of the knowledge and skilled computer skills.
Cultivation scheme: (1) Main basis of making professional cultivation scheme: Appropriate professional talents cultivation plan was made according to the “Professional Norms of High School Mathematical Discipline Mathematics and Applied Mathematics”, professional construction experience of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics in domestic brother universities and the overall development plan of the university. (2) curriculum structure: According to the unified requirements of the university, we divided the curriculum into five categories: Public basic course, major basic course, professional major basic course, professional compulsory course and professional elective course. In addition, the curriculum also includes in-class experiment (included in the courses), course design, campus practice, graduation practice and graduation design. The teaching period ratio of theoretical teaching to practical teaching is 1.95:1.00. The characteristics of cultivating applied talents were reflected from the curriculum and other teaching links. (3) Implementation of the “Professional subject platform + professional direction module distribution”:Public basic courses and professional subject basic courses are provided for the first grade and the second grade students. Professional courses module distribution cultivation is provided for the third grade and fourth grade students.
The university and the School of Science pay great attention to the faculty construction of the major. According to the provisions and requirements of the university, teaching team with reasonable degree, title and age structure was constructed by measures including adjustment, cultivation, introduction and recruitment, which guarantees the healthy and orderly development of the major.
In the past three years, two teachers under the major have been promoted to professors and three teachers have been promoted to the associate professors. 7 new teachers were introduced one after another, including 4 fresh doctors, 1 post doctor, 1 associate professor and 1 overseas post doctor. Two teachers were sent out for the on-job doctor degree. 8 teachers applied for the domestic and international visiting scholars.
There are 31 teachers under the major, including 30 teaching staff and 5 double-job staff. Present title structure: 5 professors, 12 associate professors and 13 lectures (60 percent of whom are associate professors). Degree structure: 29 doctors and 2 masters (93.5% doctors), including 4 teachers who have postdoctoral experience. 10 teachers have overseas background. Age structure: 5 persons aged from 51-60; 14 persons aged from 36 to 50; 12 persons under 36. Professional research field covers many areas such as financial engineering, differential equation, numerical calculation, operations and control and fundamental mathematics.
Teachers under this major have made remarkable achievements in the direction “Differential Equation and Application”. The direction is based on the study of differential equation and aimed at the analysis and calculation of any kind of application models. In May 2013, the Institute of Nonlinear Analysis was established. There are 3 professors, 3 associate professors and 3 lectures under the institute. All of them have doctor degree. 6 members have overseas visiting experience. Since 2010, more than 40 scientific papers have been published in SCI and 9 projects have been approved. We have been funded by the common discipline construction project for many times and have held academic lectures for nearly 20 times.
The direction “Financial Mathematics” will be the mainly supported direction in the future development of the college. There are 5 professional teachers under this major, including 2 teachers with doctor degree in the financial direction and 1 post doctor. Research issues include financial product design, asset pricing, transaction strategy research, enterprise financial risk management. The team has owned certain research foundation, published many related papers and cooperated with three fund companies.
Teachers of this major must undertake professional teaching regardless of their titles. Professors and associate professors should undertake undergraduate course teaching all years round without exception. This measure ensures that all teachers are not separated from the forefront of undergraduate teaching and also guarantees the teaching quality of undergraduate.
In terms of research results, the professional teachers have also made remarkable achievements. In the past three years, a total of 94 papers were published, including 92 papers with first author or corresponding author and 2 papers with second author. 39 papers were published in the core and SCI journals. 2 papers are published in the EI journals. 1 academic monograph was published by the Science Press. 6 national natural science foundation projects were approved, including 1 surface project with expenditure of 660,000 Yuan and 5 youth projects with a total expenditure of 668,000 Yuan. The total expenditure is 1,328,999 Yuan. The amount of expenditure and high-level papers has been steadily increasing in recent years.
3. Basic teaching conditions
Relied on the orientation of Shanghai Institute of Technology, this major owns great education condition. At present, the multimedia room in the new campus can meet the demand of the theory course teaching under the major. In the meantime, we have a computer center, which can meet the demand of experiment teaching and undertake the experiment teaching tasks of computer application and network foundation, programming language, database principle and application, data structure and algorithm design, computer network principle and application, mathematics experiment and mathematical modeling .etc. In addition, Mathematics laboratory has been built with ten more computers. The instruments and equipment are valued at more than 400,000 Yuan. Authentic teaching software including LINGO and MATLAB were acquired. The laboratory can provide convenience for students under the major to carry out financial course practice, science technology innovation project activity for college students and campus practice.
In terms of books and materials, the university library has subscribed to more than 70 kinds of journals about mathematics, computer science and information science, more than 90,000 books about or related to the major and 22 network databases, which can basically meet the demands of teaching. This major also purchased a batch of professional books and subscribed some professional magazines by making full use of the construction funds. These books and magazines play an important role in promoting teaching and academic research of the major.
In the past three years, the university has funded the construction of 5 key courses under the major with an investment of 110,000 Yuan. The total teaching expenditure has reached 1,001,200 Yuan. The expenditure was mainly used for daily teaching, student practice, graduation thesis, experiment teaching, maintenance of equipment and instrument and purchase of books and materials.
4. Professional teaching
The course construction plan for this major is strictly in accordance with the “Standards for Mathematics and Applied Mathematics in Colleges and Universities” issued by the Education Ministry. There are 28 specialized courses, including specialized basic courses like Mathematical Analysis, Advanced Algebra, Analytic Geometry and Probability Theory and Mathematical Analysis and elective courses like Financial Engineering and Experimental Design. The curriculum of this major follows the university’s cultivation policy “Tamp Foundation, Wide Scope, Strengthen Ability and Emphasis Application”. The wide scope of the curriculum reflects the undergraduate level of talents cultivation; The common software of mathematics and necessary computer software/financial knowledge were mastered through tamping the mathematical foundation; Through four years’ foreign language, computer, engineering practice and comprehensive quality teaching, it laid a solid foundation for students’ lifelong development.
In terms of the selection of textbooks, the selection percentage of award-winning, ministerial and national planning textbooks is over 60%. For example, the latest editions of textbooks edited by East China Normal University and Peking University are respectively selected for the “Mathematical Analysis” and “Advanced Algebra”. At the same time, we made the lecture notes by combining with the special orientation of the major.
In the aspect of practical teaching, at present, in-class experiments were set under several specialized courses such as mathematical experiment and mathematical modeling, the teaching time of which has reached over 110 class hours. Financial course practice was set under the direction of financial mathematics, which provides an excellent practice platform for the connection of practice and theory under financial courses of this major. The campus practice and course design of this major are respectively guided by two teachers. Teaching document such as practice program and teaching instructions are complete. The format of students’ practice report is standard, with a high rate of excellence.
The major undertakes key course of Shanghai Education Committee “Ordinary Differential Equation”; 7 university-level key courses including “Mathematical analysis” and “Advanced Algebra”. We have made preliminary progress in the course construction, which lays a solid foundation for further improvement of teaching quality.
(2) Characteristic analysis
The construction of “Mathematics and Applied Mathematics” is carried out according to the guidance of the Ministry of Education and the orientation framework of Shanghai Institute of Technology. In order to meet the demands of economic development in Shanghai and surrounding areas and reflect the application feature, we make the “solid foundation, Wide knowledge and Strong application” as the general requirement of talents cultivation. In terms of cultivation mode, not only do we emphasize the practicality, but also emphasize the comprehensive cultivation of students’ quality and ability.
In order to achieve the above objectives, the courses set under the major show the combination of mathematics, computer and science. We stress on the students’ study of mathematics foundation, computer foundation, economics and financial foundation. We increase the proportion of mathematical modeling course and integrate the mathematical modeling ideas into mathematics teaching activities. The curriculum is divided into three modules: public course, specialized course and specialized elective course. The specialized elective course is divided into two modules including financial course and statistical course for students to choose one of them.
According to the employment prospect of the market and actual situation of the faculty, “Financial Mathematics” is the main cultivation direction for undergraduates under the mathematics department of our college and “Computational Science and Statistics” is the auxiliary direction. In order to promote the development of these two directions, our major has constructed two university-level institutes including “Institute of Financial Mathematics” and “Institute of Applied Statistics” with the funds of discipline construction. On one hand, it improved the teaching ability of teachers of “direction courses” and laid a good foundation for the guaranteeing the establishment of professional elective courses. On the other hand, it further improved the ability for scientific research of young teachers in our department, which laid a good teaching foundation for the application of the second-level master program.