Opportunities for math and computer science students | Mount Allison

Undergraduate research

Applications are Open for Summer 2023


Information on opportunities listed below.

Dr. Matt Betti

There are two research projects happening this summer:

1) The distribution of disease within a honey bee farm can tell us a lot of
information about where a disease started, and how to best treat it. This summer, we’ll be continuing work on a robust simulator to study
different disease/pathogen patterns for informing treatment strategies of BeeCSI, a Genome Canada project for honey bee

2) How effective are masks and lockdowns? Since it is difficult to determine the effectiveness of a preventative measure by
measuring the very thing you are trying to prevent, we will use historical seasonal flu data (1999 – 2023) (that we will generate) coupled
with identified periods of mask mandates and lockdowns across Canada to look at the effects of masking and lockdown on influenza. This
can give us an idea of the effectiveness of these non-pharmaceutical interventions in a general sense.

Dr. Geoffrey Cruttwell

My research uses category theory, which allows one to transfer ideas and results betweendifferent areas of mathematics. My recent
research has shown in particular how we can transfer some of the ideas of differential geometry (the study of smooth surfaces) to
algebraic geometry (the study of the common zeroes of some set of polynomials). The research project (either summer research, or
honours, or possibly both) would involve learning some of the details of this theory, then applying it to understand what vector
fields and connections look like in various algebraic geometry examples.

Required background is strong performance (A- or better) in at least one of Math 3111 (Real Analysis), Math 3221 (Advanced linear
algebra), Math 3211 (Modern Algebra I), or Math 4221 (Modern Algebra II), and preferably more than one of these courses.

Dr. Laurie Ricker

We investigate opacity, an information-flow privacy property, in a setting where two competing agents or adversaries aim to hide
their secrets and expose the secrets of the other agent. We want to incorporate quantitative aspects to this problem, where
secrets now have an associated cost, and agents can choose to leak less-costly secrets if it means that they gain better access to their
adversary's secrets.
This project is an extension of (Sharpe, Ricker and Marchand, 2022) and is appropriate for up to two students, one of whom preferably has experience with game theory and automata theory.

Dr. Nathaniel Johnston

Quantum entanglement refers to the ability for small particles to interact with each other in very strange and unintuitive ways that can't be explained by classical physics.

My research focuses on exploring the mathematical properties of quantum entanglement, typically using tools from linear algebra and matrix analysis.
I have a project in mind for mathematics students with a particular interest in linear algebra. I would like to explore the extent to
which the eigenvalues of a quantum state (for us: a symmetric matrix) determine how much entanglement it has. More broadly, the goal is to determine how a state's eigenvalues determine how "useful" it is (i.e., how good it is as a resource in protocols like quantum
Students should have a strong understanding of linear algebra (at least Math 2221, though Math 3221 would be an asset). Complex
Variables (Math 3161) would also be an asset. No physics background is required.

Dr. Michael Cormier

Deep learning models are powerful, and have become a key part of computer vision in the lab and in practice. Unfortunately, many of
these models require vast quantities of data and extremely powerful computers to train from scratch. A variety of approaches have
been taken to this; one of the most commonly seen is adapting a pre-trained model to a new problem by tuning it to a new (and often much smaller) dataset, but this is not entirely satisfactory, especially if we there are no models available that solve closely related

I am currently working on methods for combining deep learning models with statistical reasoning and “classical” machine
learning methods to build smaller models that can be trained with less data, but retain the ability of deep learning models to construct
powerful features for a specific problem. I am especially interested in applying these models to processing complex documents like web
pages; my work has important applications to web accessibility, among other areas. I hope to several students this summer. Ideally, students will have background in Python programming, statistics, or artificial intelligence, but you don't need experience in all of them! I am also interested in supervising an ISRG student, and I'll be happy to work with you on an application.

Becoming a tutor

The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science helps students looking for math or computer science tutors connect with students interested in tutoring.

If you are interested in becoming a tutor, please contact the Department at math@mta.ca to express your interest and indicate your availability.

Becoming a teaching assistant

Mathematics TAs

Submit your application for a teaching assistant (TA) position in mathematics by completing the Math TA Application Form.

Applications for Winter 2023 positions are now open. Deadline to apply is December 19th. APPLY HERE

First-year TA positions also require a brief face-to-face meeting in addition to the application. E-mail math@mta.ca to set up this meeting or for more information.

Computer science TAs

Submit your application for a teaching assistant (TA) position in Computer Science by completing the Comp Sci TA Application Form.

Applications for Winter 2023 positions are now open. Deadline to apply is December 19th. APPLY HERE

For information you can email comp-ta@mta.ca


There will be a workshop for all new TAs during the first week of classes.

Please note that you must have a valid Social Insurance Number to work as a TA.

If you have any questions about the TA positions, please e-mail the appropriate address above.

Teaching assistant certificate

To be awarded in their graduating year to undergraduate students who have successfully completed the following requirements:

  • Be a TA responsible for labs (excludes marking only) in at least two different math or computer science courses, for a full semester each.
  • Attend a TA orientation session offered by the Department or a comparable workshop.
  • Enhance the teaching of a course in some concrete way with consultation and under the supervision of the course instructor. For example, the TA could:
    • present a short segment of supplementary material in a lab session
    • prepare a short hand-out (or web posting) featuring problems of a type observed to cause difficulties in the lab
    • contribute to the creation of lab material
    • offer a pre-test or pre-exam review session
    • otherwise demonstrate good judgement, mature teaching ability, and involvement in curriculum enhancement.
  • Course instructors (faculty) or lab supervisors (staff member) must also sign off with comments upon successful completion of this requirement. TAs hoping to fulfill this requirement in a particular semester and those closest to their graduation date will be given priority.
  • Complete and submit a TA Certificate application form by the last day of classes of the student's graduating year. Once you have applied online, the department will verify each component with supervising faculty or staff.


  • Obtain an application form from the Math/CS office, the first year you work as a TA. (For current TAs, do this as soon as possible.)
  • Complete and return the updated form to the office each year before March 15.
  • Certificates are awarded each year at the annual Departmental banquet.
  • A record is kept on file of those awarded certificates; with the student's permission, this information may be used in letters of reference written on the student's behalf.

Departmental Awards & Scholarships

The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science offers a variety of departmental awards and scholarships.

Current students will automatically be considered for departmental scholarships and awards if they meet the criteria. These scholarships and awards do not require an application and are generally given out during the fall term.

Every bit of information we have on your extracurricular activities can help us make the most informed decision, however.

Please tell us what type(s) of extracurricular activities (i.e. music, athletics, student government, clubs, off and on-campus activities and volunteer work, summer research, conferences etc….) you participate in.

Departmental awards supplemental information form.


Clubs and societies

Math and Computer Science Society

Executive 2022/2023

  • President: Lauren Farrell
  • VP Internal: Abigail Gogan
  • VP External: Eli Vandenberg
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Laura Paul

» Contact the Society at mathcssoc@mta.ca