Partial view of a Mandelbrot set, created by Wolfgang Beyer with the program Ultra Fractal 3

Studying Mathematics and joint schools at Merton

Mathematics is amongst the largest and oldest schools in Merton, with a long and illustrious history dating nearly all the way back to the foundation of the college in 1264. Maths, Maths & Computer Science, Maths & Philosophy, and Maths & Statistics are four-year degree courses leading to Masters degrees. If they wish, students may leave at the end of the third year, receiving a BA qualification instead.
Joint school courses

Maths & Computer Science: Natural partners, the study of mathematics is integral to, and complements, that of computer science. All computer scientists require a solid grounding in the use of mathematical tools, and mathematicians now often make use of computing tools for problem solving; this degree course allows further investigation into this overlap and mutual relevance. Example papers/topics can be found in the departmental prospectus.

Maths & Philosophy: Embracing the common interests of these two disciplines, you will cover core foundational topics in both subjects, and will then have many optional papers to choose from. The only required subjects in philosophy are Elements of Logic, General Philosophy, and Frege’s Foundations of Arithmetic, all studied in the first year. The only compulsory subject in years two and three is Foundations, which includes logic and set theory. The fourth year can be given over entirely to philosophy or entirely to mathematics, or continue with a mixture of both. Example papers/topics can be found in the departmental prospectus.

Maths & Statistics: Oxford’s Maths & Statistics course provides the chance to specialise in probability and statistics. Example papers/topics can be found in the departmental prospectus.

The teaching team
The benefits of studying Mathematics at Merton
  • Merton's mathematicians have a strong academic record. Most undergraduate students continue to the four-year Masters course, and many go on to do a postgraduate degree.
  • Mathematics and Joint Schools at Merton constitute one of our largest undergraduate subject groups overall; they are also run alongside Computer Science and Joint Schools courses. In addition, Merton has a large cohort of postgraduate students studying Mathematics and related subjects. This large collection of students and researchers with similar academic interests makes for lively discussion and debate, and a strong sense of community.
  • Merton’s student-run Mathematical Society holds a variety of events, social activities and talks throughout the year, which are ever popular.
  • Merton offers generous academic grants and funding for research projects and travel.
  • Eminent mathematician Sir Andrew Wiles, well-known through his proof of Fermat’s Last Theorem, is a Fellow at Merton.

We welcome applications from candidates of all backgrounds and nationalities. Merton College is a member of the Mathematics Admission Group and works closely together with the other colleges; intercollegiate arrangements for the interviews of all candidates ensure that each candidate is considered by several colleges and that all suitably strong candidates find places in the University, regardless of their first choice college.

Applications are welcomed from all able and well-motivated candidates.

Video: Mathematics at Oxford University
Key facts
Average intake at Merton:

6 single honours, and 2 in Joint Schools.


Candidates must take the Mathematics Admissions Test (MAT).

Written work:

None required.

Specific subjects:

Mathematics is essential and Further Mathematics is highly recommended. We expect you to have taken and passed any practical component in your chosen science subjects.

Deferred entry:

Applications for deferred entry will be considered on their merits.