Applied Math or Physics graduate school?

In summary, the conversation discusses the speaker's interest in pursuing a PhD in either applied math or physics. They are interested in both fields and are wondering which program would best suit their needs. Other participants suggest that the speaker can combine both by doing a PhD in one field that involves the other, or by being co-advised by professors from both departments. Additionally, they mention that at Cambridge, theoretical physics is actually under the applied math department.
  • #1
txr534
5
0
Hi all,

So I am currently an undergrad student majoring in math and physics wanting to pursue a PhD in either applied math or physics. I definitely lean toward the theoretical side of physics and really enjoy mathematics (which has become somewhat of a hobby). My question is, what program of graduate study would best suite my needs? Applied math or physics? I am very interested in both, and can't see myself no longer studying math. On the flip side, I also like using mathematics in the context of physical problems. I'm very interested in relativity and quantum field theory. Thanks for the help!
 
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  • #2
You can do both you know. Applied math and physics is a very nice combination.
 
  • #3
As in a master's in applied math and PhD in physics? Or Major/minor in one or the other?
 
  • #4
txr534 said:
As in a master's in applied math and PhD in physics? Or Major/minor in one or the other?

Just do a PhD in one that involves a lot of the other.
 
  • #5
Got it. Thank you!
 
  • #6
You can be coadvised by people in each department. I have heard of that happening before.

At Cambridge, areas of theoretical physics like high energy theory are actually in the applied math department (DAMTP) for historical reasons. So that might be interesting to look into.
 

Related to Applied Math or Physics graduate school?

1. What is the difference between a master's and PhD program in applied math or physics?

Both master's and PhD programs in applied math or physics involve advanced study of mathematical and physical principles. However, a master's program typically takes 1-2 years to complete and focuses on coursework and a final project or thesis. A PhD program, on the other hand, can take 4-6 years and involves more independent research and a dissertation. Many PhD programs also require students to complete teaching or assistantship duties.

2. What are the typical admission requirements for a graduate program in applied math or physics?

Admission requirements for graduate programs in applied math or physics vary depending on the specific school and program. However, most programs will require applicants to have a strong foundation in math and physics, as well as a bachelor's degree in a related field. Some programs may also require GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose.

3. Can I specialize in a specific area of applied math or physics during my graduate studies?

Yes, many graduate programs in applied math or physics offer the opportunity for students to specialize in a particular area of interest. Some common specializations include computational mathematics, theoretical physics, and biophysics. It is important to research the specific program and faculty at each school to determine if they offer the specialization you are interested in.

4. What types of career opportunities are available for graduates with a degree in applied math or physics?

Graduates with a degree in applied math or physics have a wide range of career opportunities in fields such as scientific research, engineering, data analysis, finance, and education. Many industries, including technology, healthcare, and energy, rely on individuals with strong mathematical and scientific skills. Additionally, a graduate degree can open up opportunities for higher-level positions and increased earning potential.

5. How important is research experience for admission to a graduate program in applied math or physics?

Research experience is highly valued in graduate programs in applied math or physics. It shows that an applicant has practical experience in the field and is capable of conducting independent research. Additionally, research experience can help applicants stand out in a competitive pool of applicants. However, it is not the only factor considered in the admissions process, and strong academic performance and other experiences can also play a significant role in admission decisions.

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