Advice for a Computer Science major interested in math/physics

In summary: It's not too important, but it depends on the school. Some colleges are more prestigious than others and they may be more important in the admissions process.3. Research professorships are becoming more and more popular, but they're still quite competitive.
  • #1
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Hey guys. I'm a senior in high school and I was recently accepted into Carnegie Mellon's computer science program for undergrad early decision (so that's where I'll attend). I'm pretty confident I'll stick with computer science, but I'm also interested in math and physics. I have a few questions.

1. I'm thinking of double majoring in math or physics with a B.S. in computer science being the primary degree (AP Credit should let me be able to do this course number wise). Would I be able to go to grad school in math or physics with just a double major in one of them? Would it count against me? This is more of a down-the-road question, as I would probably just switch my primary major altogether if I knew I wanted to go to grad school in math or physics right after undergrad.

2. How important is the school you go to for undergrad for grad school admissions? I ask because while Carnegie Mellon charts fairly well on ARWU for math and physics, it isn't amazing in those subjects.

3. If I were to go to grad school in math or physics and eventually get a Ph.D., I would probably want to do related research afterwards (e.g. as a professor at a university). Are these types of jobs fairly available, or is there stiff competition for them?

Thanks for any help. It's kind of late here, so sorry for any typos.
 
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  • #2
1. grad school requirements depend on the college - ask at Carnegie Mellon.
2. same as above - but your secondary school will have no impact on grad school at all.
3. professorships are very desirable jobs, they carry tenure so colleges are reluctant to create them.
Therefore - the competition is very stiff.
 
  • #3
1. I don't think it's necessarily a bad idea to double major, especially if you have AP credits going in and aren't sure what you want to do yet. I started out double majoring in physics and EE but my advisor changed my mind. Essentially, she asked if I wanted to be really good at one thing or mediocre at two. I realized I wanted to go to grad school for physics so dropped the engineering major in order to take more physics classes. You will probably find a preference by the end of your first year or two.
 

Related to Advice for a Computer Science major interested in math/physics

1. What skills should a computer science major interested in math/physics focus on?

As a computer science major interested in math/physics, it is important to have a strong foundation in programming languages, as well as mathematical and analytical skills. It would also be beneficial to have knowledge of algorithms, data structures, and computational thinking.

2. Is it necessary to have prior knowledge of math and physics before majoring in computer science?

While it is not necessary to have prior knowledge of math and physics before majoring in computer science, it can be helpful. Computer science heavily relies on mathematical concepts and principles, and a basic understanding of physics can aid in understanding certain algorithms and data structures.

3. How can a computer science major incorporate math and physics into their studies?

A computer science major interested in math/physics can take courses in these subjects as electives or as part of a minor. They can also choose to focus on projects or research that involve the application of math and physics concepts.

4. Are there any specific career paths for computer science majors interested in math/physics?

There are several career paths that are well-suited for computer science majors interested in math/physics, such as data science, machine learning, and computational physics. These fields require a strong understanding of computer science and mathematical/physical concepts.

5. How can a computer science major interested in math/physics stand out in the job market?

To stand out in the job market, a computer science major interested in math/physics can pursue internships or research opportunities that combine computer science with math/physics. They can also showcase their skills by participating in coding competitions, developing personal projects, or obtaining relevant certifications.

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