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Schools with knot theory (and perhaps algebra)


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Hey everyone,


I'm about to start my senior year and have thus started my trek into the wonderful world called "grad school applications". My main interest is in knot theory, and I would like to go somewhere that has active research in knot theory. My secondary interest is in algebra. I have collected a small list of schools that I have run into with knot theory as a stated research interest (schools like UCD, UCSB, Boston College, Indiana University), but I was wondering: what are some other places knot theory is happening? Based on my stats (below) what are some places with knot theory (or more generally, topology) that I could somewhat safely secure a spot in? 



School - Berry College (Mt Berry, GA)

Majors: Mathematics / Chemistry

GPA 3.8

Putnam: 13



--4 years chemistry research

--1 year math research

--several talks in both areas

--1 [prestigious] summer math research program

--1 publication (math)


Relevant coursework (1 semester each):

Finite Field Theory (hopefully)

Knot theory 2 and Algebraic topology

Real analysis

Abstract Algebra

Knot Theory 

Combinatorics and Graph theory

Complex analysis

Linear Algebra


Differential Equations

Proof Structures and Techniques

Calculus 2

Discrete Structures

Multivariate Calculus

Calculus 1





Interests: swing dancing, long walks on the beach, etc


I have not taken the GRE or Math subject test yet (though for the general I've been scoring 160s V/Q on my practice tests)


Advice would be greatly appreciated!



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My research area is Knot Theory as well, and I will start my Phd in University at Buffalo this fall.

I am not sure in which particular area of Knot theory you are interested in, but Buffalo is one of the good schools.

Of course there are better options. If you are interested in 4-manifold theory, Kirby calculus and stuff like that, I would suggest MSU (I don't want to refer to top schools, but of course in Princeton, Berkeley there are wonderful scholars in this area). Indiana (Bloomington) is also a good school. Charles Livingston is there, I think you might have heard of him. I am not sure if he is accepting new grad students any more, but they have a strong topology community over there. Recently, I also know that Louisiana State University is also gathering a topology community (especially low dimensional topology, including knot theory). It is not a top school, but as far as I know, they are building a community to conduct research in these fields. Brandeis is a smaller school with great funding opportunities. Also I believe it is one of the best. This is the school Levine used to teach! I know only the chair Ruberman, he is doing Gauge Theory which is quite popular in the area (specifically in 4-manifolds). 

If you consider going to Europe, I can suggest my former school (where I did my master's) Central European University, in Budapest. It is not that known in USA, but it is accredited by SUNY, and all scholars are from USA: The best part is that life is cheap and they have a good tradition in math (Erdös, Lovasz, Fejer etc.) especially in combinatorics and number theory. The program is coordinated with Alfred Renyi Institute and you can check Andras Stipsicz if you want to work in Knot Theory (he was my supervisor). Besides this one, you can check some schools in Scotland. I know Brendan Owens from University of Glasgow working on knot theory, he is a really good scholar. 

I had many other schools in mind, but I can not remember them now. 

I hope this helps and good luck!

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