History: The Department of Mathematics was established in 1892 and soon became “the source of the first generation of American-trained mathematicians of world stature” (Gardiner in Bicentennial Tribute to American Mathematics, 1776-1976). The roots of the mathematics collection can be traced to the
Broad subject areas emphasized or de-emphasized: The collection focuses on research level monographs and journals across the entire range of pure mathematics with less emphasis on applied mathematics. Since the Department of Mathematics played such a key role in the development of American mathematics since 1893, the supporting library collection closely mirrors national trends in the discipline. In the early 1900’s, general analysis was the focus of most mathematics research, and the collection during that time shows that emphasis. By 1930 research interests in mathematics were diversifying in areas such as topology, mathematical logic, abstract algebra, and theory of number; again this shift is reflected in the composition of the collection at that time. The collection is developed to support the current research interests of the Department as well as to create a cohesive well-rounded collection in pure mathematics.
Description of academic program: The Department of Mathematics offers both a B.A. and a B.S. program in mathematics, including a B.S. degree in applied mathematics and a B.S. degree in mathematics with a specialization in economics. The graduate doctoral program leads to a PhD degree in either pure or applied mathematics. The Master of Science in Mathematics degree is offered to students in the doctoral program who do not pursue study to the PhD level. The Department also offers a separate Master of Science in Financial Mathematics.
Audience/Purpose: The Mathematics Collection is designed to meet the mathematics information needs of the Department of Mathematics’ faculty, staff, and students. It supports undergraduate and graduate instruction, graduate research through the PhD level, and faculty research. It also supports mathematical work of faculty, students, and staff in other departments/units of the University.
Levels of selection: Comprehensive, research, instructional support, basic information; for a description of these levels, see the general policy statement. Scholarly materials are acquired in all areas of pure mathematics and in selected areas of applied mathematics.
Comprehensive: analysis, topology, mathematical logic, algebra, geometry, algebraic
geometry, number theory, ergodic theory, Lie algebra, homotopy, partial
differential equation, finite groups
Representative: linear algebra, optimization, fluid dynamics, combinatorics, applied
mathematics, computational mathematics
Selective: control theory, financial mathematics
Type of materials included and excluded:
INCLUDED: scholarly journals and serials
research level treatises and monographs
reference works, including dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks,
collections of tables
textbooks for course reserves
textbooks at the advanced undergraduate and graduate level
preprints – very selective
conference proceedings – very selective
EXCLUDED: dissertations from other universities
Physical formats included and excluded:
INCLUDED: print and electronic journals – prefer electronic format
print and electronic books – prefer print format for research monographs
electronic indexing and abstracting services
digital media, usually as part of books
audio, video – very selective
EXCLUDED: mathematical software
Publication dates collected: In general, current imprints are acquired for the collection. However, older important imprints may be added as they are identified and available. Missing critical titles are replaced regardless of imprint date when available.
Languages: For mathematics monographs, English is the predominant language. For journals, the language depends of that published in the major titles. Other languages currently acquired include French and German and to a lesser degree other Western European languages. Other languages are not acquired.
Geographical range: not applicable
Chronological span: Materials about current research in mathematics are acquired. Historical titles are acquired by the History of Science Bibliographer.
Areas of Distinction
Strong collection in mathematical analysis
Strong collection of collected works
The history of mathematics collection is located in the John Crerar Library. The History of Science Bibliographer has primary responsible for developing this collection. More contemporary history of mathematics titles (after 1945) are usually acquired by the Mathematics Bibliographer.
The mathematics education collection is located in the Joseph Regenstein Library. The Education Bibliographer is responsible for developing this collection.
Many titles of interest to students in the Master of Science in Financial Mathematics program are acquired by the Business and Economics Bibliographer and located in the Joseph Regenstein Library.