Sorry to make another thread so quickly.
I am planning on applying for PhD programs in Mathematics in the Fall 2011. I am worried because while I have research experience, it is not in mathematics. I am hoping someone will take a minute to read this and see what they think
My B.S is in Mathematics with minors in Chemistry, Biology, and Computer Science. I spent 2 years doing research in plant virology, and have a paper under review right now with the Journal of General Virology (fingers are crossed!) This research wasn't in mathematics, but taught me soooo much, even though this research was just me "helping" on a prof's project (I put in quotes because by helping I mean none of the ideas were mine, but I definetely did 90% of the work on the project)
My M.S is in Computer Science. I have done a ton of research in Artificial Intelligence. I've worked on about 4 different projects in AI and one in Bioinformatics, although no publications yet. I am starting a new project in combinatorial coalition formation and hopefully this will eventually get me a publication (not in a journal, but in a conference!) . The first couple projects were me doing work on a profs project, but the rest are all my ideas that I came up with, I did the simulations, I found the results, I mean, all 100% my research, prof has no influence in it
I know I have research experience in general but NONE of it is in mathematics!! I read another post on here that said "research is a must", and I am getting really down on myself. I am going to have my M.S. at the end of this semester and there's no more time for me to start a new project or learn the details of research in a new field. I will say my CS research is mathematical in nature in that I will come up with an idea, and try and both "prove" it mathematically as well as obtain experimental data to back this up by programming and then running simulations (EDIT: Not all of these projects have been successful... a lot of them have turned out to be "bad ideas", so I don't want to give the wrong impression... I guess the issue is just that the "experience" is there
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Research experience when applying for PhD in mathematics...

 Posts: 15
 Joined: Sat May 14, 2011 6:24 am
Re: Research experience when applying for PhD in mathematics...
Well..enough to get right in the way as you desire.
Re: Research experience when applying for PhD in mathematics...
Research is not a must for pure math PhD programs. While people do conduct mini projects, pure math classes get you asking the right kinds of questions. Still, as I said on the other thread, trying to understand a topic not as wellrepresented in the literature is a good exercise, to help you start getting used to synthesizing something.! I read another post on here that said "research is a must", and I am getting really down on myself. I am going to have my M.S. at the end of this semester and there's no more time for me to start a new project or learn the details of research in a new field. I will say my CS research is mathematical in nature in that I will come up with an idea, and try and both "prove" it mathematically as well as obtain experimental data to back this up by programming and then running simulations
You have more research experience than plenty of applicants. Your CS work is researchy enough  a lot of supposed 'pure math' research is graph theory this, graph theory that. Which is fine, but frankly not representative of what a lot of mainstream pure mathematics research in graduate school and beyond will be like.
Research IS kind of a must for many applied disciplines, where you cannot approximate grad level research by just paper and pencil work.