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Bachelor's degree background/Argentina

  1. Oct 10, 2008 #1

    fluidistic

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    Gold Member

    Hi all,
    I've moved to Argentina (I was living in France then) about 2 years ago and started university in the beginning of 2007. I'm applying for a Bachelor's degree in physics and it lasts 5 years, that is 2 years more than in most countries. I can say that I had a lot of difficulties adaptating me to the university's student life and study habits, so that I didn't do that well in the first year and I'm retaking 2 matters (physics I and algebra II) of the first year. Hopefully I'll finish the first year in december.
    Sincelery I don't know the level of my faculty when it comes to its quality but I guess it's not that bad.
    So my question is ... what do you think of the grade I'll get? Because I plan to apply for a master and then a doctorate (that's my dream) in Canada or France. So my background is very important to me.
    Here are the matters by year :
    First year :
    Introduction to physics
    Algebra I
    Mathematical analysis I
    Algebra II
    Mathematical analysis II
    General Physics I

    Second year :
    Numerical analysis
    General physics II
    Mathematical analysis III
    Mathematical analysis IV
    General physics III

    Third year :
    Electromagnetism I
    General Physics IV
    Mechanics
    Electromagnetism II
    Mathematical methods of physics
    Modern physics I

    Fourth year :
    Modern physics II
    Quantum mechanics I
    Thermodynamics and statistical mechanics I
    Speciality I
    Quantum mechanics II
    Thermodynamics and statistical mechanics II

    Fifth year :
    Speciality II
    Speciality III

    Ok, I must precise a lot of things, but I don't know everything about the matters.
    In the first year we saw calculus I and II, linear algebra (vector spaces, matrix and so on). General physics I is newtonian mechanics and rigid body.
    I've heard that general physics II is heat, fluids and stuff like that. For general physics III : electromagnetism up till Maxwell's equations (in the last course). General physics IV is optic.
    Mechanics is a formalism of general physics I and so is Electromagnetism to general physics III. And then I don't know that much. I know that in numerical analysis, along with the theoritical course we have a programing part in fortran 90.
    And the last year generally lasts more than 1 year because I'll have to write a thesis-like paper. Hopefully I'll be specialized in quantum mechanics, but I can't say it with certainty today.
    I guess there's too few information to conclude especially due to the fact that I've few information about what I'll be involved in.
    I can add that every final exam of physics is made of a writing part (exercises), an oral part and a laboratory part and I have to get more than 4/10 in each sections otherwise I'll have to pass it again.
    Also, can you tell me what would be a good average grades? I guess that more than 8/10 is a great average but extremely difficult to reach. On about 150 people who start this degree by year, only 3 will success (in average). So the degree is not given to anybody and I think that when you reach it, you really know almost all the basic stuff and more of physics.
    Thanks for your time and sincerity.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 10, 2008 #2

    Pyrrhus

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    Which university?. Argentina has world renown universities. Remember Argentina is one of the few Latin American countries with a Nobel prize in the sciences, and it has a couple of its universities top ranked along with Mexico, Chile and Brazil in Latin America.

    The most famous is Universidad de Buenos Aires.
     
  4. Oct 10, 2008 #3

    fluidistic

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    At the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba. I think it's good in physics, but I don't know how much compared to others.
    I know that the one from Buenos Aires is also very good and a university in La Plata if I remember well. There's also a good place for postgraduate studies in physics, it's called the Instituto Balseiro.
    But anyway, I don't think it matters that much for undergraduate studies, I don't think there are big differences but I may be wrong. To apply for the Balseiro, one must have finished at least the first 2 years at university and from what I've heard there's a lot of laboratories.
    So what do you think about the courses I'll be involved in? Is it similar to Europe and North America? Or will I have to study some more topics in order to apply for a master degree?
     
  5. Oct 10, 2008 #4

    Pyrrhus

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    As long as you receive a decent undergraduate education and/or complement it with self studying you will be ok.

    I really don't know about the courses as I graduated from Civil Engineering, but I went to a Latin American university, too. Also, I applied to Grad School recently and I did receive good offers (UIUC, UW, UMN, and others). I believe all it takes regardless of where you study is hard work and motivation.

    You will do great!, Good luck!
     
  6. Oct 10, 2008 #5

    fluidistic

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    Thank you very much Cyclovenom, that's encouraging. Till now I'm satisfied by the lectures I assist and the stuff we learn.
    I welcome any other thoughts.
     
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