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Thread: Taking math courses just for fun?

  1. #1
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Taking math courses just for fun?

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    Hello everyone. I am an international student from Korea. I majored in econ and math as undergrad and I am doing masters in econ in Korea and I am going to apply next year. I've already taken several math graduate courses( eg) Graduate real analysis, algebraic topology, financial mathematics, etc) and got good enough gpa in math( 4.32/4.5 and 4.0/4.0 in 4.0 scale). Is taking more math just for fun a waste of time? I want to take functional analysis 1,2, convex optimization, harmonic analysis and some probability theory courses.

    I have my GRE, Toefl scores ready and and I am also doing my research. What are your thoughts?

  2. #2
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Re: Taking math courses just for fun?

    Well, I will be applying during this Fall, so take my advice with a grain of salt.

    I would say that more math is always good, but for sure there is a decreasing marginal return effect and (apparently) you are at the point where more classes and As shouldn't have any significant effect on your outcomes.

    However, if you enjoy math and have already fulfilled all the requirements to be a competitive candidate (great GRE, Toefl, 3 letters of recommendation, etc...), taking those classes should be a no-brainer. Go have fun and learn things you like!

  3. #3
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    Re: Taking math courses just for fun?

    If you can handle your research while taking (and doing well in) these difficult courses, and you have everything else ready (including letters, which will be very important for you), why not? If you want to be a hardcore theorist or theoretical econometrician, there may be some benefit to functional analysis, measure theoretic probability, and convex analysis/optimization. If you want to do applied work, there are likely better courses for you to take.

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    Re: Taking math courses just for fun?

    I would add on to this by saying that measure-theoretic probability theory is a pretty useful in many fields. I am a current PhD candidate and I wish I had a better grasp of it. It is very helpful for theory and econometrics.

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