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Non-Linear and Complex Systems

For more information contact

Director of Graduate Studies
Center for Nonlinear and Complex Systems
Duke University
Box 90305
Durham, NC 27708

General Information

Degree offered:

Program Description

The Center for Nonlinear and Complex Systems (CNCS) fosters research and teaching of nonlinear dynamics and the mechanisms governing emergent phenomena in complex systems. The CNCS at Duke is widely recognized for the breadth of its activities and the overall quality of the research that it engenders. The Center provides a regular seminar series and a graduate certificate program, as well as numerous opportunities for undergraduate and graduate research through its associated faculty. Member schools and departments include: Biology, Cell Biology, Computer Science, Mathematics, Physics, Earth and Ocean Sciences, Biomedical Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, Neurology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, and the Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences.

The purpose of the certificate program is to recognize those students who develop a broad view of nonlinear dynamics and complex systems in their doctoral research and education program. The certificate program helps to guide students toward this broad view by requiring the completion of a survey course (CNCS 201: Topics in Nonlinear and Complex Systems); four courses from an approved list; and a Ph.D. dissertation on a topic in the domain of the Center. In addition, two Center faculty must be on the candidate's dissertation committee.

Dissertation topics are often interdisciplinary and rely on a close collaboration between faculty and students from different departments. A student enters into a standard existing degree program in one of the departments associated with the Center and typically elects to enter the certificate program sometime in the first or second year of graduate studies.