Mathematical Sciences

College of Science

Preliminary Exams in Mathematics

PhD students are required to pass three preliminary exams in mathematics. Students for whom core courses have been waived must still take preliminary exams. MS students may pass three preliminary exams to satisfy the creative component of their degree. The topics of the exams are
  • Algebra
  • Linear Analysis
  • Numerical Analysis
  • Ordinary Differential Equations
  • Topology
  • Exams are offered twice yearly, in January and August. Students must take at least two exams at a time, unless they have only one remaining exam to pass. Students may not take an exam in any one subject more than three times.

    For the August 2017 exams, students must sign up by August 4th 2017 and may not unregister after August 18th. A no-show at an exam will count as a failed attempt. To sign up for Preliminary exams please email Dr Harbir Lamba (hlamba@gmu.edu) from your official GMU email account and state the exam(s) you wish to sit. Since students are not allowed to sit exams unless they have taken the associated course at GMU, or have prior permission to do so, please provide Dr Lamba with the following information in the email: the semester that you took the course(s), the instructor(s), and the grade(s).



    Preliminary Exam schedule for August 2017.

    All exams will be held in Exploratory Hall, Room 4106.

    Algebra Monday, August 21, 10-12
    Numerical Analysis Monday, August 21, 2-4
    ODEs Tuesday, August 22, 10-12
    Topology Tuesday, August 22, 2-4
    Analysis Wednesday, August 23, 2-4

    Syllabi for Preliminary Exams

  • Algebra

  • Linear Analysis

  • Ordinary Differential Equations

  • Numerical Analysis

  • Topology

    Previous Exams

    Algebra

    August 2006

    January 2007

    August 2007

    January 2008

    August 2008

    January 2009

    January 2010

    August 2010

    January 2011

    August 2011

    January 2012

    August 2012

    August 2013

    January 2014

    August 2014

    January 2015

    August 2015

    January 2016

    August 2016

    August 2017

    Linear Analysis

    August 2006

    January 2007

    August 2007

    January 2008

    August 2008

    January 2009

    August 2009

    January 2010

    August 2010

    January 2011

    August 2011

    January 2012

    August 2012

    August 2013

    January 2014

    August 2014

    *The original version had a typo in problem 2(b), so that question is different here (and did not count for the actual prelim).

    January 2015

    August 2015

    January 2016

    August 2016

    January 2017

    Numerical Analysis

    January 2011

    August 2011

    January 2012

    August 2012

    January 2013

    August 2013

    January 2014

    August 2014

    August 2015

    January 2016

    August 2016

    January 2017

    August 2017

    Ordinary Differential Equations

    August 2006

    January 2007

    August 2007

    January 2008

    No exam was given in August 2008

    January 2009

    August 2009

    January 2010

    No exam was given in August 2010

    January 2011

    August 2011

    January 2012

    January 2013

    August 2013

    January 2014

    August 2014

    January 2015

    August 2015

    January 2016

    August 2016

    Topology

    August 2006

    January 2007

    August 2007

    January 2008

    August 2008

    January 2009

    August 2009

    January 2010

    August 2010

    No exam was given in January 2011

    August 2011

    January 2012

    August 2012

    January 2013

    August 2013

    January 2014

    August 2014

    January 2015

    August 2016