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Mathematica

What is it?

Mathematica is a software application that provides faculty with interactive lessons to engage students, deepening their understanding and preparing them for the future across a wealth of disciplines. Visit Wolfram to learn more on how Mathematica is being utilized in the classroom and research.

How to Get Mathematica

  • Computer Labs -- Mathematica is installed in the RU general purpose computer labs in Walker Hall.
  • Computer Clusters -- RU's Mathematica license includes installers for parallel computing (or grid computing).  If you are interested in using Mathematica to do HPC work, either on a dedicated cluster or in a distributed, or ad-hoc, grid environment, contact Andy Dorsett (adorsett@wolfram.com) at Wolfram Research.

Mathematica can also be installed on:

  • University-owned machines -- Follow the directions below to download software from Wolfram and request the appropriate activation key.
  1. Create an account (new users only)
    1. Go to user.wolfram.com and click "Create Account"
    2. Fill out form using a @radford.edu email address and click"Create Wolfram ID"
    3. Check your email and click the link to validate your Wolfram ID
  2. Request the download and key:
    1. Log-in and fill out the form to request an Activation Key.
    2. Click the "Product Summary page" link to access your license
    3. Click "Get Downloads" and select "Download" next to your platform
    4. Run the installer on your computer, and enter Activation Key at prompt
  • Faculty and staff personally owned machines -- Fill out this form to request a home-use license from Wolfram.
  • Student personally owned machines -- Follow the directions below to download from the Wolfram User Portal.
  1. Create an account (new users only):
    1. Go to user.wolfram.com and click "Create Account"
    2. Fill out form using a @radford.edu email, and click "Create Wolfram ID"
    3. Check your email and click the link to validate your Wolfram ID
  2. Request the download and key:
    1. Log-in and fill out the form to request an Activation Key.
    2. Click the "Product Summary page" link to access your license
    3. Click "Get Downloads" and select "Download" next to your platform
    4. Run the installer on your machine, and enter Activation Key at prompt

Are you interested in installing Mathematica elsewhere?  Please contact DoIT or Andy Dorsett at Wolfram Research.

Mathematica Tutorials

The first two tutorials listed below are excellent resources for new users and can be assigned to students as homework to learn Mathematica outside of class time.

  • Hands-on Start to Mathematica:  Follow along in Mathematica as you watch this multi-part screencast that teaches you the basics--how to create your first notebook, calculations, interactive examples, and more.
  • What's New in Mathematica 9:  Provides examples to help you get started with new functionality in Mathematica 9, including the predictive interface.
  • How To Topics:  Access step-by-step instructions ranging from how to create animations to basic syntax information.
  • Learning Center:  Search Wolfram's large collection of materials for example calculations or tutorials in your field of interest.

Teaching with Mathematica

Mathematica offers an interactive classroom experience that helps students explore and grasp concepts and provides faculty with the tools they need to easily create supporting course materials, assignments, and presentations.

     Resourses for educations

  • Mathematica for Teaching and Education -- Free video course.  Learn how to make your classroom dynamic with interactive models, explore computation and visualization capabilities in Mathematica that make it useful for teaching practically any subject at any level, and get best-practice suggestions for course integration.
  • How to Create a Lecture Slideshow -- Video tutorial.  Learn how to create a slideshow for class that shows a mixture of graphics, calculations, and nicely formatted text, with live calculations or animations.
  • Wolfram Demonstrations Project -- Download pre-built, open-code examples from a daily-growing collection of interactive visualizations spanning a remarkable range of topics.
  • Wolfram Training Education Courses -- Access on-demand and live courses on Mathematica, SystemModeler, and other Wolfram technologies.

Research with Mathematica

Rather than requiring different toolkits for different jobs, Mathematica integrates the world's largest collection of algorithms, high-performance computing capabilities, and a powerful visualization engine in one coherent system, making it ideal for academic research in just about any discipline.

     Resources for researchers

  • Mathematica for University Research -- Free video course.  Explore Mathematica's high-level and multi-paradign programming language, support for parallel computing and GPU architectures, built-in functionality for specialized application areas, and multiple publishing and deployment options for sharing your work.
  • Utilizing HPC and Grid Computing in Education --  Video tutorial.  Learn how to create programs and take advantage of multi-core machines or a dedicated cluster.
  • Field Specific Applications -- Learn what areas of Mathematica are useful for specific fields.


Visit the Wolfram knowledge base website to get step-by-step instructions of installing on your Mac.