The Institute was officially created on January, 15th, 1970, trough the University Reform which brought together in a single unit professors of mathematics, statistics and computer science from several other Institutions of the University. In 1993, the four departments and the courses offered were formalized. In the beginning of 2002, was create the course Bachelor’s Degree in Applied and Computing Mathematics.

IME is an institution focused on researching, learning and teaching in the areas of Computer Science, Statistics, Applied Mathematics and Mathematics. Offers services to the community, through the "Centro de Ensino de Computação" (CEC), which offers courses in the computing area; the "Centro de Aperfeiçoamento do Ensino da Matemática" (CAEM), focusing on mathematics professors of public schools; the "Centro de Estatística Aplicada" (CEA), which offers assistance in projects and statistics consulting for researchers; the "Centro de Matemática e Computação Aplicadas" (CEMCAP) works with companies and institutions interested in Applied Mathematics and Computing; and the "Centro de Competência em Software Livre" (CCSL) which intends to encourage the free and open source software development and use outside the University.

In addition to the available structure and opportunity to interact with top international teaching institutions in the area, IME-USP students have the opportunity to access the Carlos Benjamin de Lyra Library, considered to be one of the most complete libraries of Latin America concerning the Mathematics area. The Institute also has a collection of concrete objects, the Matemateca, which enable people to interact with the mathematics concepts.