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Part IA Mathematical Biology

mbMathematical Biology is a first year course in the Natural Sciences Tripos. The course is taught by biologists from the Departments of Plant Sciences and Zoology who use mathematics in their research. It is one of two courses in mathematics specially designed for first year biologists.

Mathematical Biology is designed for students who have continued with mathematics during their sixth form (or equivalent) studies, and a certain level of prior knowledge is assumed. For students from England, Wales or Northern Ireland this would most likely have been gained by the study of GCE Mathematics at A Level. Students who have only taken mathematics as far as AS Level would be well advised to carefully consider taking Elementary Mathematics for Biologists.

Experience proves that students with other qualifications can perform very well on this course. In particular students who have studied the International Baccalaureate, Scottish Highers, the German Abitur and other similar qualifications have all performed outstandingly in the past. However students who do not have a thorough grounding in calculus (including differentiation of polynomials and other simple forms such as trigonometric functions; the product and quotient rules; the chain rule; and integration at least as far as integration by substitution and parts) and algebra (including exponentials and logarithms) are unlikely to succeed.

Course Website:

Student site (restricted access): Moodle

Department in charge of course: Zoology.
Contact details: