Module (mathematics)

In mathematics, a module is a generalization of the notion of vector space in which the field of scalars is replaced by a ring. The concept of module generalizes also the notion of abelian group, since the abelian groups are exactly the modules over the ring of integers.

Like a vector space, a module is an additive abelian group, and scalar multiplication is distributive over the operation of addition between elements of the ring or module and is compatible with the ring multiplication.

Modules are very closely related to the representation theory of groups. They are also one of the central notions of commutative algebra and homological algebra, and are used widely in algebraic geometry and algebraic topology.