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Marcel Oliver

Professor of Mathematics


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+49 421 200 3212


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How to prepare for studying Mathematics

You have finished high school, have been admitted to study Mathematics at Jacobs University, and wonder what you can do over the summer to smooth your start into university mathematics. Here are a few suggestions for things you can do to bridge the long gap between your high school exam and the start of the university semester.


  • Have a second look at everything you did at high school
  • Can you reliably manipulate algebraic expressions?
  • Can you find at least two independent explanations for every concept? E.g., one that is geometric/graphical, one that is algebraic/formal?
  • Can you prove the main mathematical theorems you know? What are the assumptions, what other results does the argument depend on? You high-school text books may or may not do a good job in this department - start to look beyond!


Work problems

  • Working problems is the most important skill and pastime of a mathematician
  • The NRICH project has a collection of beautiful mini-projects - try the pure as well as the applied mathematics collection, both cover important aspects of the mind-set and skill-set of a mathematician.

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