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I am a prospective grad student who has had the unbelievable fortune of receiving three fellowships: a government agency funded graduate research fellowship, a well-known award to get a master's by research in the U.K., and a named most-promising-incoming-PhD fellowship that covers the first...
2. ### Admissions What is an informal interview? (for a graduate program in the U.K.)

Thank you. This feels like a bit of a minefield, but I'm sure it won't look that way once admissions season is done.
3. ### Admissions What is an informal interview? (for a graduate program in the U.K.)

Thank you, good sir, for the advice. What might the euphemism stand for? The professor did specifically ask me to prepare one.
4. ### Admissions What is an informal interview? (for a graduate program in the U.K.)

I have received an invitation to interview for a graduate program in the U.K. The email came from a professor who previously expressed interest in working with me and helped me write a fellowship application. Now, my question is: what makes a graduate interview in physics "informal"? Mind you...
5. ### Unidentified transition rate

Homework Statement I am identifying equations on the final exam equation sheet for my quantum II class. I've identified them all except this one, what I am guessing is a transition rate for some kind of emission or absorption of radiation case. Please help me identify the physical situation...
6. ### Variable of integration in geometric phase calculation

Homework Statement Calculate the geometric phase change when the infinite square well expands adiabatically from width w1 to w2. Homework Equations Geometric phase: \gamma_n(t) = i \int_{R_i}^{R_f} \Bigg< \psi_n \Bigg | \frac{\partial \psi_n}{\partial R} \Bigg > dR Infinite square well...
7. ### Courses Is grad-level E&M a risk?

Thanks, Zz. I got this idea after the end of the semester - so no, I have not discussed the question with my advisor. If we rightfully set aside the question of my past and future GPA and aptitude, have you any input on the usefulness of the Astro and two math courses I listed above?
8. ### Courses Is grad-level E&M a risk?

I am an undergraduate with 3 more semesters left and with the majority of my physics core complete, except for quantum theory. I'd like to give my best effort to entering a top graduate school, but I got B marks in E&M I and Classical Mechanics. This semester was a turnaround, with straight A's...
9. ### For animal lovers

Thanks to this, I watched it in the theater on Friday. My tears are on you. It's hilarious!
10. ### For animal lovers

It looks animated! Is it real?
11. ### Programs Can't make up my mind (switched my major 10+ times in 2 year

I can relate to switching a lot between disciplines. I went through 5 "declared" majors, graduated with a bachelor's in 2 of them, and got a job in a capacity that combined my two majors. Then I moved to a more science-based role within the same company because I was clearly good at it. This...
12. ### Schools Physics REUs 2016

Congrats! Did you email them?
13. ### Schools Physics REUs 2016

Chicago emailed me their results on March 15. Not sure what the hold up is.
14. ### Schools Physics REUs 2016

Summary of my results: MIT Haystack - acceptance (will attend) U Chicago - acceptance (had to decline :/) NASA Goddard - Solar Physics - informal acceptance (declined) AMNH - rejection Keck Northeastern Astronomical Consortium - rejection Boston University - Magnetic Fields in Space - no...
15. ### Other In my opinion, general education classes are not a waste of time

One thing that was good about gen ed requirements - I had to take a science class as part of my general ed in college. I was terrified of science, so I took anatomy at a community college. Which made me go, I can do science. I can like science. But the path from a single anatomy class to a...
16. ### Schools Physics REUs 2016

MIT emailed the full REU roster yesterday. 12 positions filled. From what I can tell about the names, at least 10 of them are women. 2 are from the same school in Kentucky. Wide selection from schools throughout the country. Sophomores, Juniors, Seniors.
17. ### Schools Physics REUs 2016

To add to the "email them" comment, the faculty member who runs the REU at my school said that it's generally a good idea to phrase the email along the lines of: "You are my first choice for an REU. Please tell me when I can hear about your decision so that I can make plans for any offers I get...

Kudos!
19. ### Schools Physics REUs 2016

I was fortunate that my first acceptance came from my top choice. They give you one week to decide! MIT Haystack -- accepted 3/1, offer accepted - 11 positions out of ~200 Chicago Physics -- accepted 3/15, offer declined - 24 positions total out of unknown # of applicants NASA Goddard --...
20. ### Schools Which are the best American universities for astronomy?

I can recommend the Lunar and Planetary Lab at the University of Arizona. U of A as a university is ranked #6 in the world for space science (US News World university ranking), and LPL should be right up your alley for what you've described. Other than that, I can offer only second-hand advice...
21. ### How to walk my PI through a paper

Thank you. I ended up preparing slides that I handed out and added speaker notes to my copy. Added an intro slide putting the paper in context of other research and concluded with takeaways relevant for our project. It was received with praise, so mission accomplished!
22. ### How do I get better grades?

Hi! I found out one more thing that could potentially be helpful to you or anyone else feeling perplexed by their performance on exams. Based on my chart and chronic disability status, my doctor gave me a referral to take exams at the disability center on our campus, which gives me some...
23. ### Lunar and Planetary Laboratory vs. Steward Observatory

I looked through your introduction post, and I see that you're interested in the giant magellan telescope and the mirror lab. If you can come to study in the U.S., the U of A is one of the best places to study optics. My friend is an undergraduate optical sciences major here and he started an...
24. ### Lunar and Planetary Laboratory vs. Steward Observatory

I'm in physics at the U of A. Steward is a fantastic place. I'm not as familiar with LPL, but it also seems to be pretty stellar. LPL is concerned with bodies on a planetary scale; the list that you wrote above encompasses it pretty well. I know a theorist working on his dissertation about white...
25. ### How to walk my PI through a paper

I'm an undergraduate involved in a research project. My advisor is a faculty member who has requested that I walk him and our postdoc collaborator through a paper that is relevant to our project; it's a 24-page in-depth journal article. I made an attempt at walking them through a shorter...
26. ### Kinetic energy of electron: Quantization of angular momentum

This has been solved using the DeBroglie relationship, the idea that in a Bohr atom, the angular moment of an electron is L = mvr = nħ as well as classical definition of angular momentum L = Iω, where I = mr2 Thank you for looking!
27. ### Kinetic energy of electron: Quantization of angular momentum

Homework Statement Show that the quantization of angular momentum implies that the kinetic energy of the electron is quantized as K=nhforb/2, where forb is the frequency of rotation. Assume circular orbit. Homework Equations Radial acceleration: arad = v2/r = (4π2r/T = 2*π*v/Tr = nħ KE =...
28. ### Can I self-study quantum for pGRE?

Thank you all for contributing to my question. I am happy to hear a consensus that individual study of quantum physics can suffice for my purposes. As for practice tests, I intend on following the 16-week study plan maintained by Sarah Garner at UW after I'm done with my Spring semester +...
29. ### Can I self-study quantum for pGRE?

Thank you for the feedback. I wouldn't expect you to know this, but aside from Griffith's Introductory Quantum Mechanics, can you recommend right resources?
30. ### Can I self-study quantum for pGRE?

I am pushing myself through an accelerated course of undergraduate physics (a number of reasons) and, if all goes well, it looks like I can complete the degree in two years. I have a 4.0 in physics up to this point, so I've seen no indication of my lack of work ethic/aptitude. After that, I...
31. ### How do I get better grades?

I am not in high school anymore, but I just started my undergrad and had a similar situation where I got a C on an exam last semester and a C on an exam this semester, even though I understood the subject matter and could tutor other students in it. What I did to remedy the problem: - went...
32. ### Gauss's Law vs Coulomb's law problem

The symmetry factor makes this sensible. Thank you! I found the total charge of the thin sheet from the product of σ by its area, and used that total charge in the Coulomb's equation for electric field. And in polar coordinates, you were right, things canceled. Thank you.
33. ### Gauss's Law vs Coulomb's law problem

Homework Statement A thin sheet in the shape of an annular semicircle has a positive surface charge density +σ as shown. What is the electric field at point P? Here is an illustration of the problem: http://postimg.org/image/630bpqwan/ Homework Equations Gauss's Law: φ=Qenclosed/ε0 φ=∫E⋅dA...
34. ### Schools What to do in the summer between undergrad and grad school?

Unfortunately, it does.
35. ### Average general GRE scores at Stanford

@radium this is great news. I'm above the ninetieth percentile for all three general sections, so what you're saying means that I can move on to working on more important things.
36. ### Average general GRE scores at Stanford

I agree with Stengah. I think that that is a typo.
37. ### Average general GRE scores at Stanford

Stanford's Physics profile on GradSchoolShopper.com lists their incoming class's GRE scores as: "The average GRE scores for admitted students in 2014–15 were: Verbal-171, Quantitative–176; Analytical–4.42; Physics Subject–928." How do we interpret these general GRE scores? Everywhere I look...
38. ### Engineering How satisfying is engineering for a theoretical brain?

I've taken through Calculus III, but no physics classes. Was homeschooled by my grandma who was an experimental plasma physicist and taught me physics and then I tutored my classmates in physics, but that was 10 years ago in ninth grade. But college-level science classes? Only self-study. How...
39. ### Physics How to begin a career change to physics?

I'm a career changer myself and express my respect for you pursuing your interest in physics while raising a family. I also live in New York and understand how hard it is to leave an established career in this expensive city. Before taking any classes, what's helped me gauge my interest is...
40. ### Engineering How satisfying is engineering for a theoretical brain?

After a degree in business and literature and a few years as a science writer in advertising, I'm going back to school for a second bachelor's. My idea is to go into a physics-related field. Ideally, I'd be an astrophysicist. I love physics and plan on graduate school, but knowing how many...
41. ### Space engineering, astrophysics and cosmology

I would like to know this as well, if anyone has insight.