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Astrophysics advice

  1. Nov 27, 2015 #1
    Hello,I am studying Applied Physics now ( I am first year student) . I want to focus on Astrophysics in future. Please , advise me. Whatshould I study in Chemistry, Math? which branch?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 1, 2015 #2


    Staff: Mentor

  4. Dec 25, 2015 #3
    Hey there :)

    I studied astrophysics too at uni, and i really recommend studying some computational maths subjects! Learning matlab, python, and R will be really help when you get to the research stage :)

  5. Dec 25, 2015 #4
    Do you actually have a major that says "applied physics"? It might not be a good idea to take that then. It's a better idea to take a "general physics" curriculum which will introduce you to experimental, applied, but also theoretical physics. Focusing only on the applied side might damage your chances later if you turn out you want to do theoretical stuff. Of course, I say all of this without really knowing what your curriculum actually covers.

    But aside from that, I think getting a physics degree is your best bet. A chemistry or math major is not necessary.

    If you want to know what to study in math, then that very much depends on what you're interested in, and whether you're looking at the applied or the theoretical side. So you should probably elaborate a bit. In any case, being familiar with single-variable calculus, multivariable calculus, vector calculus, linear algebra (you can never know enough linear algebra, even if it's heavy in theory!) will be very necessary. Going through Mary Boas' excellent book is a very good idea: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathematical_Methods_in_the_Physical_Sciences This will be the minimum of math you'll need in physics. Whether you need more and what you need more heavily depends on what you want to do later. For example, if you want to do General Relativity, then you'll need to study much differential geometry.
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