Mathematics is a highly developed language that abstracts numbers, spaces, and functions. Its goal is to discover new propositions of both beauty and rigor that often enable us to quantify and structurize natural and social phenomena by clarifying their essence. The Math Department of Yonsei offers a research environment and educational background designed to induce breakthroughs in the resolution of major problems in the areas of natural and social sciences as well as in mathematical science. Since 1919, many Yonsei alumni have played the creative roles in research in the fields of mathematics, computer science, computational science, actuarial science, and information technology, as well as in the financial markets and the industry.
Physics is a branch of natural science that studies an incredibly wide variety of phenomena stemming from the interaction of the spacetime, the force fields, and matter. The scope of physics research spans the smallest objects, such as quarks, the basic constituents of matter, atoms and molecules, and condensed matter such as solids, to the largest object in existence, our Universe itself, all of which are ultimately to be understood within a unified framework of fundamental principles. The discoveries and knowledge acquired by physicists have made an everlasting contribution to the monumental intellectual achievements of mankind, and brought an unprecedented level of prosperity to our modern civilization. The Department of Physics of Yonsei University was established in 1915 as the first of its kind in Korea. It has devoted itself to pioneering research and educating generations of bright young physicists who have hugely contributed to the development of modern Korea over the last century.
Chemistry is a discipline of the physical sciences that strives to understand the structure, composition, properties, and changes of the matter at the molecular level. Chemistry is often referred to as “the central science” due to its role in bridging all fields of the natural sciences. The scope of chemistry research is vast, spanning from atoms to advanced living beings. The Department of Chemistry of Yonsei University is devoted to the education of a new generation of chemists, innovators, and leaders. It began its educational mission in 1917 as the first dedicated chemistry department in Korea. Throughout its rich history, it has built a reputation for conducting world-class research and fostering qualified graduates who have contributed to academia and the industry.
Earth System Sciences focus on the Earth, using integrated knowledge in mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology. Earth is now understood as a complex and evolving system made up of many components such as materials in the deep Earth and the life on its surface. As we live on Earth, we need to have a correct understanding of our planet as a system to be able to protect its environment and to utilize its resources. For this reason, Earth System Science is considered a core convergence science for the 21st century. The Department of Earth System Sciences of Yonsei University undertakes various missions, from classical geology and, natural hazards and environmental research, to space exploration and exoplanets. Alumni of our department are playing important roles in diverse capacities, including in petroleum and resource agencies, academia, and institutions, and in other related industries and governmental positions.
Today (at the beginning of the 21st century), mankind is finally able to explain the development of the Universe as part of the big bang paradigm. Our next aim is to understand the origin of stars, galaxies, planets, and life within this paradigm. Therefore, countries worldwide are now investing more time and resources in astronomy and in the space sciences than ever before. Along with the US and Austrailia, Korea is actively involved in the Great Magellan Telescope Project, which aims to build the largest telescope to date by 2020. The great observatories of JWST, TMT, ALMA, SKA, etc. are also under construction: thus, we are living in a time of astronomical “big bang” expansion! In addition, research on the manufacturing, maintenance, and applications of satellites is a current and future focus. We are actively engaged in education and research in the fields of galaxy formation and evolution, stellar evolution and population, astronomical optics, and satellite sciences. These activities are undertaken in a timely and necessary fashion, with the constructive support of large government projects such as BK21Plus and SRC.
Atmospheric Science is a discipline that aims to understand and predict a wide range of phenomena that occur in the atmosphere, including weather and climate, and their relations to the ocean, the earth surface, and the biosphere. The application of knowledge from mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology is required for a proper assessment of atmospheric phenomena. Investigation tools include in situ measurements and laboratory experiments, remote sensing of the global environment, theory development, and numerical experiments. The recent development of innovative measuring instruments, advancement in satellite and radar technologies, development of more sophisticated and reliable numerical models to describe atmospheric and oceanic movements, and enhancement of computing power have expanded the scope of atmospheric science beyond the traditional realm of weather forecasting. Atmospheric science is now regarded as the scientific discipline that can provide a solution to the fundamental environmental problems that we face today on a global level, including global warming, air pollution, ozone holes, extreme weather and climatic events, and so on.