Department of Mathematics and Statistics
Previously named: Mathematics, Natural Philosophy, and Astronomy; Mathematics and Mathematical Physics; Mathematics
History: At the creation of the University of New Brunswick in 1859, Mathematics was a required field of study in all three years of an Arts degree and came under the heading of 'Mathematics, Natural Philosophy, and Astronomy'. Mathematics has been available for study by regular and honours students since that time. This remained the same until 1887 when Mathematics became grouped with Mathematical Physics and by 1890 was simply known as 'Mathematics'. Beginning in 1890, Mathematics was an independent department within the Faculty of Arts. In 1890, Mathematics was mandatory in the first two years of a Bachelor of Arts and third and fourth year study was only available to honours students. This remained the same until 1930 when Mathematics was offered as a mandatory course in first year and an elective in second and third while continuing to be a course of study for honours students. This brought the total number of Math courses offered at the school to five classes. For the remainder of the decade, this number did not change, but by 1950, the course offering had grown to eleven choices. At this time, Mathematics continued to be a mandatory class for first year arts students while being an elective beyond that. Beginning in the 1954-55 academic year, Mathematics ceased to be a mandatory course in an Arts degree but remained an elective and honours stream of study. Furthermore, Mathematics continued to be mandatory within certain streams of study within other faculties such as Science, Forestry and Engineering. That year there were thirteen Mathematics courses offered at UNB.
In 1973, due to a marked increase of interest in the subject, Statistics was proposed to be added to the title of the Mathematics Department. This did not change the course of study within the department because a concentration in statistics had already been in place for years, but it did advertise this fact more effectively. This proposed change did not take effect until the 1978-79 academic year when the 'Department of Mathematics and Statistics' was listed in the academic calendar for the first time. There were one hundred and fifteen courses offered by the department that year, a huge increase from the fifty-six courses offered in 1973, which reflected the increase in interest in Math that had been taking place. In 1989, the study of Mathematics switched from the Faculty of Arts to the Faculty of Science. There were seventy-six courses offered that year by the department; by 2012 there were seventy- eight.
Physical location: Tilley Hall
Faculty: Science (1989 - present); Arts (1859-1989)
Notes: The year that a certain department was established can be a subjective figure. For the purpose of this wiki, the year that a department is considered first established is the first year it was listed in the academic calendar as an independent chair with no other affiliation, unless there is documentation to demonstrate otherwise.
- UNB Calendars (UA RG 86), 1862, 1887, 1890, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1925, 1930, 1940, 1950, 1955, 1960, 1970, 1973, 1979, 1985, 1989, 1990, 2000, 2012.
- UA Case 109; Section 5.
© UNB Archives & Special Collections, 2014