Not available in 2020/21
MA431      Half Unit
Advanced Topics in Operations Research and Applicable Mathematics

This information is for the 2020/21 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Ahmad Abdi and Dr Neil Olver


This course is available on the CEMS Exchange, MBA Exchange, MSc in Applicable Mathematics and MSc in Operations Research & Analytics. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


Basic knowledge of graph theory and optimisation.

Fundamentals of Operations Research (MA423) or an equivalent background knowledge of linear programming.

Course content

An examination of advanced topics in Operations Research. The topics selected differ year to year; the topic for 2020/21 will be "Optimisation on Graphs".  Topics covered in the course, such as the theory of perfect graphs, multicommodity flows, and the use of semidefinite programming. These topics are fundamental, but have important applications to (for example) communication over noisy channels, the design of communication and transportation networks, and network routing.

More detailed information is available on Moodle or from the Department of Mathematics administrative office.


20 hours of lectures and 13 hours and 30 minutes of seminars in the LT. 1 hour and 30 minutes of seminars in the ST.

Formative coursework

Details will be provided at the start of the course.

Indicative reading

Detailed suggestions for reading will be given before the start of the course.


Assessment path 1
Exam (50%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.
Coursework (50%) in the LT.

Assessment path 2
Coursework (50%) in the LT.
Project (50%) in the ST.

Exam (50%, duration 2 hours). Coursework (50%) in the LT.

PhD students are expected to complete a research-based project in the ST as a replacement for the final exam.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2020/21 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the situation of students in attendance on campus and those studying online during the early part of the academic year. For assessment, this may involve changes to mode of delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Mathematics

Total students 2019/20: Unavailable

Average class size 2019/20: Unavailable

Controlled access 2019/20: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Problem solving
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills