Whenever students appear to have trouble with mathematics in their physics courses, they either hate physics or fear it. The blame for this plight could be due to the structure of the mathematics and physics curricula or the incompetence of the teachers. This paper focuses on investigating the progression of the mathematics courses and the level of mathematics required of students in the Department of Physics at the Bahir Dar University, Ethiopia. The key objective of the research is to find out how the mathematics courses are integrated into the physics curriculum especially in terms of providing students with fundamental mathematical skills needed in the corresponding physics courses. A content analysis of the physics curriculum was carried out to determine whether an apparent mismatch or relevant integration exist between the progression of the mathematics courses and the level of mathematics required to learn the physics courses. As a preliminary work, we examined the correlation between student performance (final grade) in the mathematics courses and performance in the physics courses. Despite the significant efforts that gone to improve the undergraduate physics curriculum in Ethiopia, the present study showed that the curriculum made students to attend some senior physics courses without the essential mathematical skills. For example, essential topics in mathematics like vector calculus and partial differential equations are not taught until the end of the second year first term. On the other hand classical mechanics course, which extensively make use of these mathematical topics, begins in the second year first term. Recommendations and implications for physics curriculum and instruction are made.

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