William & Mary

Computational Operations Research

"Operations research" stems from a study of military operations conducted during World War II that sought optimal ways to allocate scarce resources. Now, Operations Research (OR) practitioners model and analyze the behavior of real world systems using advanced analytical and computational techniques to make informed decisions in areas such as healthcare and manufacturing; as well as in service organizations, the military, and government.

This interdisciplinary Computational-OR program is offered by the Department of Mathematics, in cooperation with the Departments of Computer Science, Applied Science, and Public Policy. The program has a balanced combination of various areas such as statistics, optimization, business, and computer science. Its emphasis on Computer Science courses is unique and offers students opportunities to take electives in machine learning and data mining along with core Mathematics classes.

The William & Mary COR program is designed for individuals with a strong analytical background who want to pursue a professional career that utilizes their quantitative skills. It is more professionally oriented than a typical Master of Science degree and more technically advanced than the typical Master of Business Administration. The COR program prepares students for continued study at the Ph.D. level as well as for careers as analysts and consultants in various industries. Our placement record has been excellent.

The program's emphasis is on mathematical modeling and on the application of quantitative techniques associated with optimization, probability, stochastic processes, and statistics to the design and operation of systems. Students are expected to perform all aspects of project work, from problem formulation to communication of project results. The project is similar to a professional activity in which creativity and a variety of techniques are applied to a problem that may not be clearly stated at the start rather than like a course in which an assigned body of material must be mastered.