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    Hi everyone,

    I'm very excited to be starting an MSc in Hydrology in September (part of the Environmental & Water Resource engineering department) but I'm a bit worried about the difficulty of the mathematical aspects of the course, as I am not a natural mathematician (I did my undergrad degree in Geography which didn't require any complex maths and I only got a B at AS-level Maths).

    Does anyone have any experience into how much maths is required for an environmental course and whether it would be a good idea to revise some A-level maths before starting the course - I was thinking some stats revision would be useful, or maybe some core?

    I'm sure that Imperial wouldn't have given me an offer if they though I couldn't handle the course but I want to be as prepared as possible.


    Would a Hydrology course not involve some fluid mechanics?

    There's lots of different ways of teaching fluid mechanics, but if they plan to teach you the more general equations of motion for a fluid (Navier-Stokes), it would be good to understand what partial differentiation is. It's quite a simple concept though, so I wouldn't stress about it.

    I suspect you will need to learn some extra maths, but there will be time to do it during the course.

    Why not have a closer look at the contents of the course modules? The description documents sometimes contain reading lists. In browsing through them you'll develop a sense of the level of mathematics involved.

    The module description documents for your course can be accessed here:

    Module CI9-EE-18 for example will go more smoothly if you have a good understanding of the S1 module under the GCE A Level mathematics syllabus. Any general introductory textbook on statistics will give you a sufficient grounding. In terms of any knowledge you'll be expected to have on, say, partial differentials, I highly recommend Herbert Gross's MIT video lectures (parts 1 and 2) accessible under MIT's OpenCourseWare Supplemental Resources.

    In any event the contacts for the course will be happy to outline which mathematical compentencies they'd like to see.
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