Careers you can do with a maths degree
You can get great jobs in many different fields with a maths degree. Will you use your mathematics skills to get a graduate job in finance or analytics? Or do you want to develop your programming and computational skills for a career in IT?
Whatever path you choose, your understanding of mathematical theory will put you in a great position. We’ve put together a brief list of popular mathematics career opportunities below.
Accountancy and Finance
Forget the stereotypical image of a boring office with uneventful working days. In reality, being an accountant can be a fulfilling career. You’ll use your analytical skills to interpret data and make financial decisions for companies. You'll also put forward realistic targets to drive growth for business.
You’ll normally start in financial accounting in either the public or private sector. Later on, you can choose to specialise in areas including:
- corporate finance
- forensic accounting
- budget control
Many employers don’t need you to have a specific accounting degree (although it wouldn’t hurt). Instead, they might expect you to pick up specific accounting qualifications while working.
Examples of these qualifications include those offered by the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) or the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).
The world of banking is vast, and the types of roles you can get with a maths degree vary too. You could work in either a customer facing or back office role, providing a range of services and products to your clients.
Or you could use your economic and statistical analysis skills to advise clients about financial risks. You can use mathematical modelling techniques to determine probability and assess risk in roles such as:
- insurance adviser
- loan officer
- financial adviser
Alternatively, you could work in high-risk, high-reward jobs as a financial trader or investment banker.
Our mathematics courses have a strong focus on practical skills. You’ll get a taste of how programming and computer science goes hand-in-hand with maths. And you'll be able to develop new techniques in the world of computing.
After all, your knowledge of applied mathematics is key to understanding coding.
You could work in a role such as:
- IT manager
- information services consultant
- forensic analyst
- ethical hacker
- software developer
- back-end developer
You could even develop new advances in machine learning and artificial intelligence.
You’ve got lots of options if you want to become an analyst. You'll study large amounts of data and find patterns in statistics.
You could become an actuarial analyst - someone who uses formulas to identify normal distribution. Or an insurance analyst, where you need to look at average life expectancies of certain groups of people.
You could even do vital work in health, figuring out the most suitable recipients for organ donations.
More interested in business? In financial risk analysis, you'll predict change and future trends in various markets. Or specialise in credit, working in diverse fields like marketing or sales.
Supply chain and logistics
Have you ever thought about how your latest online bargain gets to your door? The growth of ecommerce means that supply chains are important to businesses.
If you work in logistics, you’ll use data simulation and modelling skills to improve supply chains. You could group deliveries to help your marketing teams target specific locations. Or work with operations teams to develop algorithms and get the right goods to the right people.
Teaching and Academia
Did you have a teacher that inspired you? Or wish you did?
Maths teachers are in high demand in the UK, so why not use your specialism to inspire the next generation of students?
You'll be enthusiastic about maths, and get difficult ideas and concepts across in interesting ways.
You’ll need to gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) through an Initial Teacher Training (ITT) programme, normally lasting a year. As part of this, you’ll do some placements in schools alongside established teachers and decide which age group you want to teach.
Instead, you may want to pursue a career in academia. You’ll do research in key areas and develop your skills as a lecturer while working towards your PhD. You'll also use your advanced knowledge to discover new breakthroughs in mathematics. Find out more about postgraduate study with us.
How do I become a Chartered Mathematician?
The Chartered Mathematician (CMath) designation shows that you’re highly competent in mathematics. It also displays your professionalism, and many higher-level jobs may need you to hold it.
To get this status, you’ll first need to study a course at an accredited institution, like Portsmouth. You must then continue your professional development throughout your early career.
You can find out more and apply at the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA) website.
Looking for a course with a focus on practical learning alongside theory? Our mathematics courses are ideal. They're listed in the top 10 in the UK in the Guardian University Guide, and are accredited by the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA).
And with our careers advice available for up to five years after you graduate, you’ll have all the support you need to land your dream job.