Department of Mathematical Sciences

Mathematics

Biomathematics

Using mathematical, statistical and computing skills to understand biological and medical systems has a long history but recently interest in this field has been rejuvenated. This is due to globally important issues that researchers and others are striving to understand – these include the spread of infectious diseases such as HIV, Aids, malaria and tuberculosis, and the effects of climate change. For this precise mathematical models of the experimental data need to be formulated and analysed, and predictions made. As a consequence of the wide diversity of specific knowledge and skills involved, training and research will be done in collaboration with local and international research groups in the biological and medical sciences.

There are three key ingredients making the Biomathematics postgraduate programme attractive and unique:

  • The exposure, through leading local and international experts, to various perspectives driving the needed coalescence between mathematics and biology/medicine.
  • The study of a wide range of mathematical, statistical and computational techniques useful for addressing problems and challenges from biological, medical and/or environmental sciences.
  • The interdisciplinary nature involving collaborative project work with researchers in mathematical sciences and in biological/biomedical sciences.

Offerings

In 2008 the Biomathematics stream of the BSc (with Molecular or Ecology optins) was introduced at the University of Stellenbosch – the first such stream at a South African university. From 2009 a new focus in Biomathematics of the BSc (Honours) in Mathematics was introduced as a degree of the University of Stellenbosch and offered by the Department of Mathematical Sciences and the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences (AIMS). Masters and doctoral studies in biomathematics typically involves co-supervision by a biomathematician and biological/biomedical scientist.

For more information please contact Prof. I. Rewitzky.