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Advice on research topics

  1. Mar 29, 2009 #1
    I have a chance to be doing some research this summer in some good labs. My level of proficiency with physics is around the late freshman - mid sophomore stage. What could I do research on?
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 29, 2009 #2


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    By "chance" do you mean that you've been accepted into a formal program? Or have you landed a job in a lab? In either case, you will more than likely have a topic assigned to you. There aren't too many opportunities for a first year student to define his or her own research.

    But in the event that you actually have this opportunity the answer is anything. The way to narrow it down is to consider what you enjoy doing, what skills you're interested in learning, what mentors you have available, what facilities you have available, etc.
  4. Mar 30, 2009 #3
    No. I have a chance to do anything. I have been given freedom to do so. I don't know what I can do. I'd like to do something interesting but I don't have any idea what is possible at my level. I know I can't do groundbreaking research but I'd like to do something interesting. There definitely has to be something.
  5. Mar 30, 2009 #4


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    What kind of labs are these? Optics? Electronics? Materials science? I very much doubt they're just throwing you into a lab with a bunch of expensive equipment and leaving it entirely up to you with no supervision. Do you have an adviser of some sort? It's pretty unrealistic to expect a first-year college student to know anything about the state of the fields they might be interested in, much less what needs to be done and what they can do in the time given. Even first-year grads usually don't know that. Even some 5th year grads I know don't know that.
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