What is a Quantitative/Analytical course?

This requirement and definition presume that students registering in Q courses have met a basic competency standard. Foundations of Quantitative and Analytical Literacy (FAN X99) has been developed to address the quantitative needs of students not ready for Q courses.


To qualify as Quantitative/Analytic (Q), a course must have either quantitative (numerical, geometric) or formal (deductive, probabilistic) reasoning as part of its primary subject matter, or make substantial use of such reasoning in practical problem solving, critical evaluation, or analysis.

    Interpreting the Definition

    Mathematics courses already required in Math, the Sciences, Engineering, Business Administration and Economics, and statistics courses required in Social Science programs clearly qualify as Q courses, as do the symbolic logic courses offered in Philosophy.

    Courses currently offered in programs such as Engineering Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Business, Economics and other Social Science programs that contain a significant math or stats component also would be eligible for Q designation.

    A third type of course eligible for Q designation will be designed especially for students in the Humanities and Fine Arts. The goal of such courses will not be simply to nurture traditional math skills. Such courses will aspire to the greater challenge of deepening the understanding and appreciation of quantitative and formal reasoning, their ubiquitous utility, and their creative potential. We view such courses as focusing on the relation between (a) concepts and structures communicated through numbers and other systems of abstract representation (such as formal languages, programming languages, geometries, graphs) and (b) fostering students' ability to engage more effectively with the subject matter of their respective programs and practical everyday situations. Such courses need not focus primarily on quantitative or formal reasoning methods, but should give significant exercise to such techniques through model building and problem solving, both in class and in course assignments.