Directed reading program in mathematics

Program description

This program pairs undergraduate participants with graduate student mentors to read a selected math book/paper.

Goals of the program

  • To provide a fun and stress-free environment for undergraduates to learn math in the style of a reading course with a professor.
  • To give undergraduates the ability to explore topics they might not see in the standard curriculum.
  • To expose undergraduates to mathematics outside of a classroom setting.
  • To give a less intimidating avenue for students to learn topics that might have seemed out of reach.
  • To give undergraduates experience in learning independently and presenting mathematics.

Who should apply

  • The program is aimed at UCSD undergraduate mathematics majors, but could also be suitable for undergraduates with mathematical interests who would like to further explore the field. Applicants must have completed, or be in the process of taking, one of 100 series, 140 series, 200 series, 220 series, or 240 series.

Why should I take part?

  • You've always wanted to learn about a certain math topic but have never had the time to do so.
  • You like math and have considered a mathematics major, but want to learn more about what math "is".
  • Directed self study is far more effective than traditional classroom learning: you really have to understand something to be able to explain it to someone else.
  • You get a $50 bookstore gift card to be redeemed toward a math book.


  • Undergraduates are expected to work for approximately 4 hours a week: 3 hours of independent reading and 1 hour in a meeting with their mentor.
  • Undergraduate participants should meet with their mentor roughly once a week to discuss their progress.
  • At the end of the quarter, the students are expected to give a "flash talk" to other students and mentors. This could be a short exposition of an interesting result, or a broad overview of the subject of their project.


The application is now closed.
Please fill the application form by Friday, March 1st, 2024. CREDITS_HERE


If you have any questions, email one of the organizing team:
Center for Student Success

Department of Mathematics Department of Mathematics

© 13 January 2024 Alina Bucur